For these (multiple screen) video-installations Menno Otten works in the (old) tradition of found footage films: films that are made entirely out of archive material. Sometimes these newly created films have a traditional way of story-telling that reminds of the old silent era of cinema, sometimes the films have a more abstract and poetic way of story telling.
Commissioned by: Philips Philips Electronics N.V.
"The history of PHILIPS & Co." 4 short found footage films and 4 video-walls with 8 projections
Koninklijke Philips Electronics N.V. (better known as Philips) is a well-known Dutch electronics group. A newly opened museum in 2010 in Eindhoven and highlights the history of this company, which was founded by Gerard Philips. In the new museum, visitors experience the development of global concern, from the start in 1891 to the innovations of tomorrow. It is an interactive story about innovation and ambitious entrepreneurship.
Kinkorn architects asked Menno Otten to create 4 new found footage films and four 8-screen projection walls highlighting different periods of the Philips company.
Commissioned by: MUSEUM OF RESCUE TEAM "DORUS RIJKERS" - DEN HELDER - THE NETHERLANDS
The history of "DORUS RIJKERS" - 3 short films
Twelve years after the establishment of the "Dorus Rijkers" museum, designers Kinkorn are asked to update the permanent exhibition. The newly made design focuses on four film compilations showing each stage of a rescue action: 1. disaster report 2. the rescue itself and 3. the homecoming. For each episode filmmaker Menno Otten each creates a new movie based on found footage material from the archives of the museum. The projections are in the midst of major equipment from different periods.
Commissioned by: THE NETHERLANDS INSTITUTE FOR SOUND AND VISION
"Living with Oranje" - video-installation on 24 projections and 3 short films
The Dutch Royal House of Oranje is almost 200 years old and more than a century of that period has been recorded in motion picture. The exhibition area, measuring 500 m2, has been fitted with man-sized projection-screens showing pictures of the Royal House, divided into several themes: sports, mourning, work, battle and celebrations with Oranje.
In the middle, two rooms have been delimited. One of these focuses on the the tasks (work) of the Oranjes, the other on family (private life). The subject shown on the borderline is the Oranje’s relations with the press, with a special focus on scandals, satire and secrets revealed. At the centre of the space themed ‘the tasks’, is a monumental table depicting three subthemes: state banquets, meetings and ceremonies. Suspended above the table is a large light-sculpture.
In the ‘family’ space a compilation is shown of films at the hand of Prince Bernard. Groups are, under the supervision of a public attendant, admitted into this room in specific time intervals so they can test their knowledge of etiquette at a specially made game. The virtual control is in the hands of Reinildis van Dithuyzen; she provides the introductions and assesses visitors’ knowledge on the basis of multiple topics: table setting, seating arrangement, titles and conversation.
All footage in the exhibition was taken from the archives of Sound and Vision and composed into a new visual story by director Menno Otten.
Commissioned by: MUSEUM AAN DE STROOM (M.A.S) - ANTWERP - BELGIUM
Sacred Places, Sacred Books - Short film and 3 single screen installations
Judaism, Christianity and Islam are closely related. They originated in the Middle East and consider Abraham an important ancestor. One almighty, eternal God created the world and revealed himself to humans through words. These revelations were written down in holy scriptures, which constitute a guide for life: Tanakh, Bible and Qur’an. At the same time, believers live their religion through a rich variety of practices. These include visiting sacred places, such as Jerusalem, Rome and Mecca, a custom which has existed for centuries.
Sacred Places, Sacred Books is a double exhibition on these three monotheistic world religions. At the MAS you can familiarise yourself with the tradition of pilgrimage. In the Nottebohm Room of the Hendrik Conscience Heritage Library you will be able to discover special copies of the sacred books. The two exhibitions show what the sacred books and places mean and have meant to the faithful, both at present and in the past.
Jews, Christians and Muslims feel strongly connected to their sacred places. Here, we will follow pilgrims’ travels, from their departure and the visit to a sanctuary to their return home. Their physical and spiritual journeys inspire feelings of hope, ecstasy and purification.
For the exhibition Menno Otten created a new film that was the entrance to the exhibition. The entire movie was made from from found footage material from archives all over the world. Produced in close collaboration with Constant van Panhuys.