Film Archive

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Das Meisterspiel

Documentary Film
Germany
1998
106 minutes
subtitles: 
No

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lutz Dammbeck
Lutz Dammbeck
Jörg Lensing
Eberhard Geick, Leo Potesil, Thomas Plenert
Margot Neubert-Marić
Lutz Dammbeck
Michael Laube, Bruno Pisek
A Gordian knot, a criminal case still waiting to be solved: who overpainted the works of Arnulf Rainer, an artist known for his own overpaintings? Was this really an act of right-wing modernism? However thrilling this question may be, the film is also concerned with portraying a far too vibrant national-conservative parallel society and exposing the deep rift between right and left that even postmodernism was unable to overcome. The weekly paper “Die Zeit” was irritated: Dammbeck “searches the brown swamp and gets stuck there.” In fact, he put his finger in the wound of a German history allegedly overcome.

Sven Safarow
Werkschau Lutz Dammbeck 2018
Das Netz. Unabomber, LSD & Internet Lutz Dammbeck

“The Net” was the ultimate expansion of Dammbeck’s spectrum of themes. The focus of ideological interpretations and appropriations is no longer the artist but technological progress.

Das Netz. Unabomber, LSD & Internet

Documentary Film
Germany
2003
115 minutes
subtitles: 
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lutz Dammbeck
Lutz Dammbeck
Jörg Lensing
Thomas Plenert, Eberhard Geick, István Imreh, James Carman
Margot Neubert-Marić
Karl Laabs
“The Net” was the ultimate expansion of Dammbeck’s spectrum of themes. The focus of ideological interpretations and appropriations is no longer the artist but technological progress. Connecting phenomena like cybernetics, counterculture, science and avant-garde art leads to alternative problems and questions that evoke Adam Curtis’s BBC television films in their astuteness. The film revolves around a taboo: is it permissible to take Kaczynski, the Unabomber, seriously? The former Harvard mathematics professor’s violent protest against the scientific elite represents an irritation in the too rarely contradicted success story of digitization.

Sven Safarow

Herakles Höhle

Documentary Film
Germany,
GDR
1990
44 minutes
subtitles: 
No

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lutz Dammbeck
Lutz Dammbeck
Jörg U. Lensing
Eberhard Geick
Margot Neubert-Marić
Lutz Dammbeck
Karl Laabs, Eric Rueff, Lutz Dammbeck
The project Dammbeck had already started to prepare before he left and had partly explored in media collages, was produced for Südwestfunk in 1990. It is here that he first analyses in documentary-essayistic style the ideological outlines and fascist remains in the new, free world. It’s about the “concealed continuity of totalitarian structures”, an unpopular position in a society that wished to see itself as post-ideological according to Francis Fukuyama. The film is part of the “Herakles-Konzept” that Dammbeck had begun in 1982, illuminating invisible power structures and examining authoritarian dynamics from the left and right.

Sven Safarow
Werkschau Lutz Dammbeck 2018
Overgames Lutz Dammbeck

For Baudrillard the game show in the consumer society is a ceremony “like the catholic mass or the rite of sacrifice in primitive society.” For Dammbeck it is also an instrument of re-education.

Overgames

Documentary Film
Germany
2015
164 minutes
subtitles: 
German

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lutz Dammbeck
Lutz Dammbeck
J. U. Lensing
Börres Weiffenbach, Eberhard Geick, Volker Tittel, István Imreh
Margot Neubert-Marić
Lutz Dammbeck
Vinzent Muhsik, Björn Geldermann
For Baudrillard the game show in the consumer society is a ceremony “like the catholic mass or the rite of sacrifice in primitive society.” For Dammbeck it is also an instrument of re-education that was intended to exorcise post-war Germany’s authoritarian attitude. A contradiction in the supposedly un-political realm of consumption? At the very least a radical incision into national identity. In “Overgames”, Dammbeck sets out in quest of the German psyche, the “FRG source code” that he imagines to be somewhere between Margaret Mead and Richard M. Brickner, between celebrations of the highest being and game shows, between “Hitler Youth Quex” and the American Dream.

Sven Safarow



Award winner of the Goethe-Institut Documentary Film Prize 2015

Zeit der Götter

Documentary Film
Germany
1992
92 minutes
subtitles: 
No

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Lutz Dammbeck
Lutz Dammbeck
Jörg Lensing
Thomas Plenert, Eberhard Geick
Margot Neubert-Marić
Lutz Dammbeck
Karl Laabs, Ronald Gohlke, Klaus Dzuck
“Age of the Gods” asks a fundamental question: can the aesthetical and the political be separated? Dammbeck had begun to study Arno Breker while he was working on the “Herakles-Konzept”. The sculptor and protégé of Adolf Hitler had established some ties to the fringes of the art world in the FRG with various portrait commissions, including for Ernst Jünger and Peter Ludwig. The film goes on to ask what power-political transformations do to art, how fascist symbols can regain their aesthetic innocence and how much opportunism is found in “pure” art. This is where Dammbeck emerges as the great chronicler of the German relationship between art and power.

Sven Safarow