WEG (A_WAY) is a 3 channel video installation by the Argentinian Leipzig-based artist Guillermo Fiallo Montero. In it the artist takes on his own nomadic condition as a person of the world in between Buenos Aires, Leipzig and London – where he was born, where he develops his artistic practice and where he finds a way to survive – to create a work which reflects about today´s fragmentation of the human being in a capitalistic context. Weg is a “metafilm” which leaves us with the responsibility of what to make out of these images in movement which apparently show nothing else but people in motion themselves and hardly interacting with one another. Facing this stage, we see nothing but feet of people deeply engaged in their life and objectives, some walk in a relaxed way, others are like marching puppets or mesmerized soldiers. As an environmental video installation, Weg says a lot about the anonymous condition surrounding us, as everyone seems concentrated in some sort of fight for survival, ignoring everybody else or networking only with a purpose in mind. As viewers, our static gaze over this continuously changing and symbolic landscape showing urban movement in its most abstract form, leads us to think about the rapid change of values we undergo today, how fleeting meaning has become and how valid our objectives really are. What is it that keeps us on the move? What is it that keeps us so busy?
Weg is a poetic and aesthetic formulation inquiring how vain our efforts sometimes are, how these are mostly determined from the outside and how we don´t even realize it. Montero is forcing us here to stop and watch ourselves. In the process we end up asking those very same questions Philosophy has long posed and kept us busy with: Who am I? Why am I here? Where am I going?
In an age were all concepts and certainties have exploded and are nothing but pragmatic compromises only valid as long as they work, Weg urges us to consider the sense of things, how can art and life be possible in a time where everything keeps evolving endlessly and despite of us.
As an artist and a witness to this hectic ongoing state of affairs, Montero not only pays a tribute here to his very own personal displaced condition but encourages us to try to understand the motivations behind our own motion, to consider how useless, vain, ridiculous or manipulated they sometimes are. We cannot help noticing the different shoes and their brands, trying to grasp the people, the city where the scene might have taken place. With this film, Montero is showing us exactly how we´ve move on from a condition “I think therefore I am” to a condition “I desire therefore I am”, except if we did become closer to understand how everything is a machine and how machines are made to connect, the problem lies today in the fact that our desire is being driven for us. “Weg” confronts us with how our wishes are being determined for us and dictated from an external capitalist/ consumerist structure which has invaded all domains of our life. Social context, history, family and experience have become nothing but blurred concepts, collaborating along with the major machinery of domination taking over ever since.
Ambitious in its formulation, Weg manages furthermore to explore how the concept of identity and nationality have become diffuse. Where or what is home today? The concept of belonging, the same way as the concept of being, is no longer nowhere to be localized and has been replaced for a condition that finds itself in permanent negotiation and exchange and can assume multiple roles and perspectives according to time and place. Posing various and pertinent questions and showing the crossroad we find ourselves in today, Weg speaks of a dilemma which deeply characterizes us today and which Hegel has already formulated when saying: „Wenn ich mich finde, verliere ich die Welt. Und wenn ich die Welt finde, verliere ich mich.“
Guillermo Fiallo Montero
3 channel video installation, 2007
Sound and samples by Marek Brandt
@ the Festival of Contemporary Art Varna 2008