Materia Obscura - The film
Jürgen Reble 2009



This work is based on some excerpts of the film "Instabile Materie" which I realized in 1995. Sorce material were handprocessed 16mm film stripes which I covered with chemicals. In this so called "chemograms" the used substances mostly salts became moulding shapes. Years later I digitized parts of the film frame by frame in high resolution and started with the computer to slow down the speed just to analyse the sequence of events. So arose a morphology of the film emulsion with the embeded substances and a bizarre, strange world full of magic revealed.




Dieses Werk basiert auf einigen Auszügen des Films "Instabile Materie", den ich 1995 realisierte. Ausgangsmaterial waren handentwickelte 16mm Filmstreifen, die ich mit Chemikalien überhäuft hatte. Dabei entstanden sogenannte "Chemogramme" bei denen die verwendeten Substanzen -überwiegend Salze zum bildgebenden Inhalt wurden. Jahre später digitalisierte ich einige Teile des Films Bild für Bild in hoher Auflösung und begann am Computer allmählich die Abläufe und Veränderungen der einzelnen Sequenzen zu analysieren. So entstand Schritt für Schritt eine Morphologie der Filmemulsion mit den darin eingeschlossenen Substanzen und eine bizarre, fremdartige Welt voller Magie kam zum Vorschein.


Blu-Ray Edition

HDV, 16:9, 105 minutes
Film, Chemistry, Editing and sound: Jürgen Reble
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Materia Obscura - The performance
Jürgen Reble & Thomas Köner


Our universe consists mostly of dark and unperceivable materia. This performance is a door to enter this world. The visual source material for Materia Obscura are about 25.000 scans in high resolution of 16mm ‘chemograms’ that Jürgen Reble produced in the past. These ‘chemograms’ are made by unique alchemical transformations of the film material itself. The final editing of the image streams will happen live on the computer. It is a visual expedition into cristallized salts and dyes wich are changing rhythm and structure constantly between moving images. Inside the chemical elements of the film appears the bizarre richness and beauty of its materiality.



In his music, Thomas Köner always moved towards the borders of perception, as if it was a means of communication with the beyond. The quadrophonic staging of Materia Obscura expands the performance space, where the horizontal flow of time meets with the sonic impulse and creates a vertical dimension, in which premonition, memory and splinters of Here and Now become perceptible as the darkening of the observed Materia.

Watch Demos on YouTube / Vimeo
 Rio de Janeiro, Multiplicidade, 30.11.2011
Amsterdam, Paradiso, Sonic Acts XIII, 25.2.2010
25 fps festival Zagreb, Croatia, 24 Sept. 2009