‘Der Kopf des Architekten’, 2014 6:24min
Ein Trailer zu einem Film über Arno Brandlhuber und meinen Großvater
Der Kopf des Architekten
über Arno Brandlhuber und Richard Roth
Musik: Timo Blunck und Marco Dreckkötter
Gesprochen von Jeanne Tremsal
Christopher Roth, April 2013
Bielefeld, 2013, Brandlhuber+ Christopher Roth
“Neue Bescheidenheit – Architektur in Zeiten der Verknappung” im Bielefelder Kunstverein
Trailer Translated to English
This is the second announcement for a much longer film about Arno Brandlhuber and about my grandfather.
The film will be called something like “The Head of the Architect” and no building will be shown from the outside, apart from the tower in Lichtenberg we are buying. And this tower is a staircase to a building that no longer exists.
The back of my grandfather’s head was really beautiful and he had a big nose . All his life he wanted to be an architect. But he had to earn money as graphic designer quite early on and then the war began.
During the war he tried to convince the enemy to surrender. They worked with loudspeakers on the frontline. My grandfather was in Riga and when it was all over, he walked by foot to Central Franconia or Upper Franconia. This is where Arno Brandlhuber comes from.
Long after my grandfather sent me the head of bronze. It stood for years on his flat-roofed house in Munich. Like me, my grandfather was not very tall and he wasn’t into high ceilings either. Not to mention stucco ornaments.
During the student revolts they nailed down the door of his studio , he was a professor for Typeface Design, and when he broke the door, the students pelted him with paint bombs.
In defense of the students I have to say that ––during that semester–– my grandfather supposedly only had one student , and the Academy Gardens in Munich were only accessible to professors to play bocce. And female students had to apply with breast-portraits only.
However, all this I learned from a former student of my grandfather ––if not the only student back in 1968.
Arno Brandlhuber at one point told a student, if he says “but” once again he could piss off. Times have changed.
A Taiwanese student of Arno in Nuremberg, where he has a nomadic professorship, once said that a house could be God. The conversation was about God and not about houses. The student is Christian and I still think a lot about this line.
Especially now that we all read the speculative realists who write that things do quite well without us and our perception. This is why they work towards an ontology of things. Thinking things without thinking.
Another reason why in the film no buildings will be shown from the outside. Apart from the tower in Lichtenberg.
I wonder if the new modesty is more modest than the old one or just newer. Are holes more modest than windows? Is black more modest than an image or just black? Is a hole in film black? Is a a window a screen or a frame? Think of Rear Window, Hitchcocks masterpiece. We are disabled and confined to a wheel chair and we only see Grace Kelly through the window across the courtyard. On the other side.
The film will be less about modesty, than about exhaustion. As Arno Brandlhuber says, it is always an option not do something and not say anything. The new utopia may be much closer to the uninteresting and the bland, like meditation and epiphany.
My grandfather collected Buddha statues and Catholic reverse glass paintings. He has never smoked, but was very fond of wine. In the afternoon, when my grandmother was walking the dog, he got a bottle from the basement drank it rapidly, and when my grandmother was back he stood up and said: “So now I’ll get my first bottle of the day.” I don’t know if my grandmother knew anyway and how he made the empty bottles disappear. Anyway, he became 96 years old.
It should have been a film about stones and water and orchids, but again, it will be a film about the movements of the people.