HD video | 16:9 | 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.

Concept / Directed / Edited: Kay Walkowiak
Performer: Re Lim, Robert Ong, Barbara Probst, Tom Railton, Julien Tang, Grace Wei, Bryden Williams, Tauver Yu
Camera / Edited / Postproduction: Brett Novak
Production Assistant: Barbara Probst
Special Thanks: Jotte Seghers, Theophile Seyrig, Jeniffer Lindsay, Ye Dongxu, Erica Huang
Supported by: Federal Chancellery of Austria, Federal State of Salzburg, City of Vienna