October 27, 2012 - January 27, 2013


Group Show / Video Art

The Harwood Musuem of Art

Taos, New Mexico, USA


MILIEU - All I have is my Distance

Single Channel HD Video


MILIEU - All I have is my distance

(single channel HD video)

Not by form, materials or themes, but by forces, density and intensity are those structures and environments created.

In his project „MILIEU“, the German conceptual and video artist Jorg Staeger focuses on the philosophical dimension of the term “Milieu”.

In „1837, Zum Ritornell“, philosopher Gilles Deleuze and psychoanalyst Félix Guattari defined “Milieu” as a block of space and time formed through periodic repetition of these components.

The common interspace within the incessant oscillation between chaos and order became especially important to Staegers artistic approach.

„The brain can be best described as a complex system, which constantly strives to reach a steady state and thereby creates order out of chaos“

(Metzinger, The Ego Tunnel)

The work consists of black and white graphic forms and structures generated by computer according to pre-programmed rules, the patterns are transformed into a constant pulsating and transforming flow of moving images.

The generating of images is controlled by the composition „Materie IV“ by German composer Markus Muench, consisting of rearranged fragmented microtonal sounds recorded in the field. The sound (music) serves to effect the sequences of moving images and in turn merge into an experienceable principle.

What becomes visible in rituals as a habitual routine, is here a rhythmic event before its territorialization, i.e. a ephemeral state of absolute release.

Environments ("Milieu") are changing constantly, merge into each other and are open for chaos. It seems as the only remedy is rhythm which in turn share an area with chaos: the transition between the states, that is to say the space between two environments, where the reciprocative encoding takes place.

“What belongs to me is first and foremost my distance. All I have is my distance.”  (Deleuze/Guattari)

This space in the balance of order and chaos as a principle, set the scene for the project "Milieu".

These happens almost without any material or symbolic bond and completely without any linguistic help, which anyhow is not the first choice to represent a complex system. And when it is about rhythmic events, audiovisual capabilities are far superior to the language. Particularly when rhythm and order is seen as a principle of the distances.

".......and the forces to take in are now no forces of the earth anymore, which yet constitute a major expressive form, but are today forces of an energetic, formless and immaterial cosmos.

© 2012 Jörg Staeger / Stills from „MILLIEU - All I have is my Distance“