Slavs and Tatars: "Lektor" / Georgiy Danelia: Mimino (1977)

Fr 09.05.
  • Free entry

A Georgian bush pilot pursues his dream of flying large international aircrafts in Moscow where he first gets lost with an Armenian truck driver and later feels lost while roaming the world in jet liners. Georgiy Danelia’s “sad comedy” Mimino (1977, 91 min) is the second film screening with a live translation to German, that Kunsthalle Zurich presents as part of the «Lektor» programme by the artist group Slavs and Tatars.

In advance of their fall exhibition, Slavs and Tatars developed a new version of the audio work «Lektor» for the future public library space of Kunsthalle Zurich. The work consists of an Uighur voice reading excerpts from the medieval epic poem Kutadgu Bilig (Wisdom of Royal Glory), and a voice-over of the German translation. The Gavrilov technique, often used in Eastern Europe for live single-voice-over-translations in cinematic screenings while elsewhere for news reports mainly, served as a model for this piece. This skillful translation practise can now be live experienced in the film screenings at the exhibition spaces of Kunsthalle Zurich. It demonstrates the gap between the original language of each film and the local language of the audience, that the real “lector” occupies.

Danelia’s absurdist movie has itself been shaped by the pitfalls of culture, geography and governance that are the focus of Slavs and Tatars: Unable to shoot in America as planned, Daniela relocated the production of one of his most popular films to the West Berlin’s Tegel Airport, where the crew had to cross borders daily from their East Berlin base.