Ursula Palla, talking to the moon, 2018. Installation view

talking to the moon

2018. Video installation, sound, 9′, looped

Video sequences of birds are projected onto a rotating metal frame, such that the video images overlap with the silhouette of the rotating metal bars.

The video images appear for just a moment and disappear. The animals are deprived of their entirety and are visible only fleetingly.

Ursula Palla's work often circles around the relation between human and nature, time and space. Again and again she combines physically present objects (bars, small sculptures) with ephemeral video images. She thus shows the contradiction between the world as it is in reality and our imagination of it, which also determines our gaze.

Talking to the moon is about the question of which areas we assign to animals. A metal wheel from which four vertical bars rise up rotates haltingly. From time to time a video projector makes shadows reminiscent of birds appear over these bars. In our everyday life we also often perceive birds in a similarly fragmented manner, as they scurry through our field of vision, hardly noticed. We think we know them but know little about them. Nonetheless, through our civilization we assign these animals a habitat, such that they hardly find space, neither in the sky nor on the earth – as in the installation, where they can neither fly properly nor really land.

(Samuel Herzog)

Translated from German: Alan Roth


Ursula Palla born in Chur/CH

Ursula Palla lives and works in Zurich and has taken part in numerous exhibitions and video festivals in Switzerland and abroad. She works predominantly in the medium of video and deals with topics like projection, reality and construction in expansive installations and objects. Ursula Palla's works draw their forcefulness from their ambivalence; from their aesthetic consciousness and the courage to cast it off. They provide material for dreams that animate one to think, and show the brittle conditions of our being in memorable and poetic images. (Angelika Affentranger)