Ritual Union
2013
HD video | 6.36 min. | Color | Sound


Light-flooded spaces and hallways of a piece of architecture by Zaha Hadid that cannot be placed in a geographic region form the futuristic setting for Kay Walkowiak’s Ritual Union. Right at the beginning, a slow-moving camera scans the biomorphic forms of the building and subsequently follows a group of young athletes of various ethnicities in red tracksuits who are engaging in warm-up exercises. The scenes are infused with a continuous calmness that is also reflected in the slowly developing performance. After a short scene of striding through hallways reminiscent of Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, all eight people meet in a big arena at a black square lying on the floor as it forms the center of the action. A pause is the prelude to what comes next: the athletes leave the picture but return instantly in couples each carrying a flat, colored object. Magnesium dust fills the air and with exact movements the four elements are placed to form a composition at the black quadrant. The performers leave the scene. What remains is the object that refers to the act of the ritual they carried out together: Ritual Union.