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Artist Talk
Yalda Afsah, Maurin Dietrich & Cathrin Mayer 

Artist Talk 

Yalda Afsah, CENTAUR, 2020
Film still

Courtesy the artist

Yalda Afsah’s video works reveal how human projections and claims to power determine our treatment of animals. Afsah’s camerawork reveals moments in which the human impulse to dominate animals subtly enters the field of our perception. But scenes also emerge that are marked by a great closeness and care for the animal world. Maurin Dietrich (Director, Kunstverein Munich) and Cathrin Mayer (Curator, HALLE FÜR KUNST Steiermark) address these tensions in a conversation with Yalda Afsah, talking about access to the medium of film and the ambivalent relationships between humans and animals. 

Artists

Participating artists

Maurin Dietrich

*1990 Freiburg, lives in Munic

is an art historian and curator. She has been the director of Kunstverein München since July 2019, prior to which she was a curator at KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin and worked for the 9th Berlin Biennale. Dietrich is a co-founder of the Berlin project space and residency program FRAGILE and has served as a guest mentor and curator at the postgraduate program Berlin Program for Artists (BPA) and as an lecturer at the University of the Arts, Berlin and the Zurich University of the Arts. Dietrich publishes in various magazines such as Mousse Magazine, Cuba Paris, and Cura and regularly contributes to exhibition catalogs.

Cathrin Mayer

*1988 Vienna, lives in Graz

Cathrin Mayer is currently a curator at HALLE FÜR KUNST Steiermark. Until May 2020, she was a curator at KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin. She recently curated a major solo exhibition by Estonian artist Flo Kasearu at the Tallinn Arthall and the first solo exhibition by Kosovar artist Dardan Zhegrova, at FRAGILE (Berlin). In addition to her curatorial work, she teaches regularly, most recently at the Universität der Künste in Berlin, among other places. She is the editor of the book Wish A Dream and Dream A Wish which was published by Sternberg Press in march 2021 and most recently joined the team of Edit a German literature magazine.

Yalda Afsah

*1983 in Berlin, lebt in Berlin

German-Iranian artist and filmmaker Yalda Afsah (b. 1983, Berlin) explores how space can be cinematically constructed as her films profoundly explore the interface between reality and staging. This formal characteristic of Afsah’s work is conceptually mirrored in her recent portraits of human-animal relationships that reveal an ambivalence between care and control, physical strength and broken will, instinct and manipulation. Despite their documentary focus, her films and video installations seem to capture strange choreographies on screen – equally portraying and fictionalising their human and non-human protagonists. Afsah has presented her work at various exhibitions and festivals including Manifesta 13, Locarno Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur, Institute of Contemporary Arts London, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf and Neuer Berliner Kunstverein. In 2018, she received the Karl Schmidt-Rottluff scholarship and from 2019 – 2021 she was a fellow at the Berlin University of the Arts’ Graduate School. She is currently a mentor for the Berlin program for artists (BPA).

Yalda Afsah, CENTAUR, 2020
Film still

Courtesy the artist