Sebastian Meissner works as a media artist using sound, video and photography. Employing multiple artistic personas (Autokontrast, Autopoieses, Bizz Circuits, Klimek, Open Source, Random Industries, Random_Inc), his works negotiate urban/cultural/social scenarios, randomness, historical music archives and strategies of networking. He works with computer music sources, sampling and moving photography - assembling their interrelation within geographic/historical/political discourses.
Over the years Meissner's works have been widely presented at festivals and by institutions such as Transmediale (D), Podewil (D), Portikus (D), Schirn Kunsthalle (D), Festival for Jewish Culture (PL), Goethe Institute Buenos Aires (AR), Goethe Institute Ramallah (PAL), Goethe Institute Almaty (KZ), Sonar (ES), Mutek (CA), OK Centrum (A), Hazira Performance Center Jerusalem (IL), Kulturhuset Stockholm(S) and Forsythe Ballet (D).
Meissner studied Education, Sociology, Psychology and American Cultural Studies at the Johann Wolfgang von Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main (D). In recent years he has participated in workshops, seminars and lectures for Barents Spektakel, Kirkenes (NO), Goethe Institute Ramallah (PAL), DJ-School Of Contemporary Music, Tel Aviv (IL), Internationale Sommerakademie, Mousonturm Frankfurt (D) and International School of New Media, Luebeck (D).
Klimek - Movies Is Magic - Anticipate 008
released October 2009 - CD / digital
Sebastian Meissner returns to his Klimek moniker with an ambitious follow-up to his Dedications album, picking up exactly where he left off, continuing and expanding upon the final track, "for Steven Spielberg & Azza El-Hassan". Movies is Magic deals both directly and peripherally with ideas of film music: its purpose, its meaning, its uses. Though the music is furthered by the concepts underpinning it, it stands on its own two sonic feet with swathes and swells of cinematic, expansive melodies: from the bold to the understated, the shades of grey to the brightly direct, the string-laden to the piano-driven - some with sprinkles of subtle percussion and others which run through the barest of themes in order to produce giant results. Movies is Magic renders itself as a comment on the idea of cinema sound, bringing it into a present-day home listening experience that is more concerned with conjuring new images than accompanying existing ones. Resonating in myriad directions, the traces of its musical, conceptual and visual inspirations remain, haunting the complete work. This confluence of cultural influences and sound productions is an indication of where Movies is Magic takes both the listener and the artist behind the experience.
Like an orchestra restructured in the digital domain, the remnants at the core of each piece lend themselves less to conservatory comparisons than filmic ones. Ambiences reside inside, but are never left untouched or undeveloped, subverting expectations and leaving trails of themselves long after each song ends. Large, picturesque settings produce emotionally compelling mini-narratives, while warm, open progressions balance with the multi-layered shadows that are expected from a Klimek album. A careful percussive phrase, the occasional menacing horn, a tentatively sustained tone, or renching vocal murmur arrange these pieces between intersecting musical camps, while rustling backgrounds creep up to remind one where they stand. The material is the product of a variety of allegiances and alliances: from soundtracks to the range of electro-acoustic and electronic sensibilities that produce such works as these, the multiples of moods and directions all further the frame of the project and the Klimek sound.
While the album is the singular vision of Sebastian Meissner, the project wouldn't be possible without the value of his collaborators, which include: Scott Arford, Steve Heather, Zeitblom, Robert Curgenven, Gerard Lebik, Dawid Frydryk, Marta Collica, Hugo Race, Ran Slavin and Ursula Maurer. The CD comes packaged with a 14" x 9" fold-out poster with an alternate cover photo image - revealing another layer of the release - and an essay detailing the full scope of Movies is Magic. The essay, album and track titles take direct inspiration from Slavoj Zizek, whose analysis of cinema was a strong beginning point for the project.