GOD MOVES ON THE WATER (3', Germany, 2008)


In this mischievous compilation short, on visual excerpts from the 1997 Céline Dion’s My Heart Will Go On music video is superimposed a 1929 gospel song, by use of sleight cinematic means, thus engendering a creative reconfiguration on the subject of the Titanic shipwreck. Surprisingly as it may seem, the 3 minutes alone the film lasts are enough to incite reflexion on the dynamics undergone by a real life event, being turned into the topic of a song, then turned into a blockbuster material, and later on into a tear-jerking music video until taking the shape it currently has in GOD MOVES ON THE WATER.





Screenplay: ERIK BÜNGER




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Director's contact: info[at]erikbunger[dot]com



ERIK BÜNGER is a Swedish artist, composer and writer whose work revolves around the human voice and how its contradictory relationship to the body can undermine our common understanding of categories like identity, freedom, time, space, life and death. In lecture performances, videos, installations and texts he explores human language and song - not as carriers of semantic meaning - but instead he focuses on the leftovers of the signifying operation; when the voice loses its designated place and starts living a life of its own. He has performed and exhibited worldwide at prestigious venues including Centre Pompidou in Paris, Lincoln Center in New York, Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Rotterdam Film Festival and  the Institute of Contemporary Art in Australia. In 2011 he received the Ars Viva Award from the German Kulturkreis.


Rotterdam IFF 2012 / Hors Pistes Film Festival Centre Pompidou Paris 2011 / Shift Festival Basel 2011


"Similarly to how Andy Warhol was using Marilyn Monroe’s face re-presentation back in the 60s, ERIK BÜNGER is re-presenting, and furthermore, critically re-interpreting Céline Dion’s image, also a symbol of pop iconography. By rewinding scenes from the famous music video – that, at its’ turn consists of fragments from James Cameron’s TITANIC - the artist plays upon the editing, creating a lip-sync illusion between Céline’s utterances and the lyrics sung by a man, in order to criticize the conceited and spectacle-orientated consumer society. Seeing that audiovisual pre-existent footage is deconstructed and reassembled, a new reading of the shipwreck (placed in a predictable future) can allow us to speculate that the diva’s image is no less comparable with that of a prophetic intermediary between the divine – also ironically replaced by technological progress, conveyed by the ship (hence the short’s title) - and the shipwreck’s victims, whose presence one can only guess, as we don’t literally see them, but simply the spaces they are supposed to inhabit. The fundamental assumption underlying this puzzle is that the audience already knows the sources quoted – integrated in a collective, hyperreal memory – and can mentally figure out the missing pieces. In a postmodernist manner, the addressee understands and is amused by the subversive effect of the experiment, precisely because he gets its’ cultural allusions." (Andreea Mihalcea, BIEFF 2012)