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American Night, 2009

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American Night

2009
5-channel film installation
Colour, sound
Shot on 16mm anamorphic
Converted to HD-SR and transferred onto BlueRay disc
Aspect ratio: 2,35:1 cinemascope
Loop, 40 min 42 sec
Edition 6 + 2 ap


The five-channel film installation American Night (2009) reflects upon the Western film genre by combining ‘the myth of the frontier’ with allusions to today’s hegemonial foreign policy in the USA. Titled after a technique that allows the shooting of night scenes during the day, and François Truffaut’s La Nuit Américaine (1973), the film features fundamental motifs of the Western in its characteristically opulent, extended total shots and its celebration of a sublime nature: the deserted town's main street, the saloon, the waiting woman, etc. As he does frequently in his works, Julian Rosefeldt reveals the myth machinery of film-making by exposing the set’s backdrops and the production process. The central scene, a campfire conversation between five cowboys, consists solely of quotations from films, song texts, statements by politicians and the country’s foundation myth (mirrored in Westerns and asserting the American concept of freedom), and it finally disintegrates into a litany of empty phrases. Throughout the film, Rosefeldt creates a melange of ‘frontier myths’ and present-day occurrences. He combines the figure of the lonesome and self-righteous cowboy with the gangsta-rapper, the cowboy’s speech with the Republican’s rhetoric, and leaves the interpretation to the spectator.

Shot in Andalusia in a mock-up Western town which had already served Sergio Leone's For a Few Dollars More (1965), the film can be read as a metaphorical contemplation on an empire in decay and exudes both the director's love for the mythology of the Western genre and his delight in its partial deconstruction.

Summarised from Stefan Berg, in: Julian Rosefeldt: American Night (2009)


Exhibitions / Catalogues

– Hollywood and other Myths, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Tel Aviv, April–September, 2018
– WILD: Fabricating a Frontier, Calgary Contemporary, Calgary, July–August 2017 (curated by Lisa Baldissera)
Julian Rosefeldt: Works 2001 – 2016, Nikolaj Kunsthal, Copenhagen, March–May 2017 (curated by Helene Nyborg)
Julian Rosefeldt: American Night, Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis, MO, USA, March–August 2016
Julian Rosefeldt. American Night, YOUNGPROJECTS, Los Angeles, September–October 2012 (curated by Paul Young)
Julian Rosefeldt – American Night, Bayerische Akademie der Schönen Künste, Munich, September–October 2012
Julian Rosefeldt – World-Making. Film and Photo Works 2001–2011, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taipei, April–June 2012   
   (curated by Mei-ching Fang, Fang-wei Chang; catalogue)
Julian Rosefeldt: American Night, ACMI Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Melbourne, June–July 2011
   (curated by Sarah Tutton)
Julian Rosefeldt – Making Of. Film Installations and Photo Works 2004–2010, DA2 – Domus Artium, Salamanca,
   October 2010–March 2011 (curated by Javier Panera)
Julian Rosefeldt. American Night, British Film Institute, London, September–November 2010 (curated by Elisabetta Fabrizi)
Julian Rosefeldt: American Night, Kunstmuseum Bonn, November 2009–January 2010 (curated by Stephan Berg;
   catalogue)
Julian Rosefeldt. American Night, EX3 – Centro per l'Arte Contemporanea, Florence, October–December 2009
   (curated by Arabella Natalini & Lorenz Giusti; catalogue)
American Night, Arndt & Partner, Berlin, May 2009
2. Bienal de Canarias de Arquitectura, Arte y Paisaje, TEA Tenerife Espacio de las Artes, Santa Cruz de Tenerife,
   Canary Islands, March–May 2009 (curated by Octavio Zaya; catalogue)

Film Credits

With (in alphabetical order):
Priscilla Bergey
Maurice Brink
Jeff Burrell
Laura Cameron
Jeff Caster
Lisa Densem
Erik Hansen
Errol T. Harewood
Melissa Holroyd
Robert Kovacs
Grayson Millwood
Janaina Pessoa
Tammi Torpedo
Suse Wächter
Gavin Webber
Tim Williams
Jeff Wood


and
Rafael Aparicio Garcia, Juan José Asensio Robles, Antonio Cazorla Segura, Juan del Aguila Ropera, Marcus Dickloff, José Ruiz Dorado, Antonio Ferrer, Jesus Ferrer, Pepe Fonda, MARINA FontaDEZ, Pablo FontaDEZ, Antonio Garcia Bautista, Francisco Garcia Miras, Alfonso Gonzalez Garcia, José Gonzalez Garcia, José Gonzalez Robles, Tribian Guiris, Joaquín Hernandez Alonso, Joaquín Hernandez Tamayo, Francisco Javier Fernandez Gonzales, Kate Harman, Diego Jimenez Flores, Tom Kühnel, Peter Lampe, Luis Lao Ramos, José Lopez Ruiz, Juan Luis Perez Salvador, Monolo Quesada Lopez, Francisco Ramos, José Francisco Requero Martínez, Alex Reyes Rueda, David Rodriguez Sola, Manuel Rodriguez Ibercom, Manuel Rodriguez Sola, Enrique Romera Bascuñana, Diego Sanchez, Jisé Sanchez Pascual, Rafael Talaveron Gonzales, Rafael Talaveron Ortiz, Antinio Ubeda Martínez, Santiago Ydañez, Ruben Zapata and Mancha & Capo

Director of Photography: Christoph Krauss
Costume Designer: Bina Daigeler
Art Director: Ina Timmerberg
Head of Production: SandRA Knape
Editor: Heike Parplies
Gaffer: Christoph Dehmel
Key Grip: Matthias Genschel
Sound Supervisor: Florian Kühnle
Make Up Supervisor: Mara Collazo
Hair Stylist: María Rosa Ferré Vico
Puppeteer: Suse WÄchter
Set Photography: Barbara Schmidt
Casting: Silke Koch & Susann Reitz

1st Assistants Director: Susana González, Angel Lafuente
2nd Assistant Director: Asier Iza
Assistant Set Designer: Solveigh Sprengel
Set Construction Manager: Markus Schröder / Blackbox
Production Painter: Bettina Scheibe
Assistant Set Construction: Ole Voss
Assistant Painter: Rafael Exposíto
Props: Paco Calonge, Pablo Arbesu
StanDby Props & SFX: Diego Rodríguez
Props Assistant: José Antonio Ubeda Gonzalez
Construction: Fernando Contreras

Costume Assistant: Eva Salas Infante
Seamstress: Karin Florencia Quijada Mingot
B-Up Costumes: María Silvia Palomares Pérez
Dressers: José Ruiz Dorado, Maria Angeles Vargas Román
Costume Research: Sandra Ernst
Make-Up Artist: Eva María Alfonso Soler

Production Managers: Samantha Grange, Gonzalo Cañellas
Production Assistants: Juliane Grunwaldt, Maria del Mar González, Michal Beno, Pavol Prekop
Production Drivers: Vladimir Kolomiyets, Antonio Rodriguez Leal

1st Assistant DoP: Frederik Tegethoff
Electricians: Dirk Domcke, Justus Pasternak
Grip Assistants: Carmen Cuello, Ian Pankrest, José Hernandez Marquez
Boom Operator: Simon Perez Wiesner

Extra Coordinator: José Martinez
Assistant Exra Coordinator: Diego Jimenez Flores
Horse Coordinator: Juan José del Castillo de la Rosa
Weapon Coordinator: Juan Carlos Carrasco
Helicopter Pilot: Raul Aranda Montero
Helicopter Co-Pilot: Ramon Manuel Maria Aldamiz
Helicopter Mechanic: Antonio Martin Arias
Stuntmen: Jesus Lopez Erena, Jesus Lopez Goncer, Jesus Sanchez Castro

Sound Facilities: Tonstudios Hanse Warns
Sound Design: Markus Stemler, Fabian Schmidt, Kuen Il Song
Foley Artist: Carsten Richter
Foley Mixer: Christoph Oertel, Hanse Warns
Choir Recording: Kuen Il Song
Piano Recording: Hannes Fuss
Pianists: Maurice Brink, Madalina Pasol de Martin
Choir: Sonari Chor Berlin
Choir director: Berlin Volker Groeling
Choir director: Almería Justo Maria Andujar Peral
Choir singers: Dirk Becker, Lutz Berger, Burkhard Birr, Horst Böhm, Werner Bönnen, Bernhard Ciupka, Werner Clarus, Udo Dubbrik, Bernd Franke, Jürgen Franzmann, Hubert Funk, Rolf Gommert, Perry Gadd, Dieter Halling, Wolfgang Hering, Lutz Hülsebeck, Hans-Peter Hürten, Jörg Janke, Gerhard Just, Dieter Karasch, Lothar Kläke, Hanno Kramer, Reinhard Krause, Manfred Lotka, Hans-Joachim Matthes, Thomas Möller, Harald Oremba, Klaus Radeloff, Klaus Röse, Madjik Shams-Dolatabadi, Manfred Steckel, Wolfgang Steinert, Günter Tibursky, Dieter Weber, Karl-Georg Woese, Tanja Simic

Telecine & Digital Postproduction: PICTORION das werk GmbH
Postproduction Supervisors: Frieda Oberlin, Mathias Knöfler, Andrea Kürschner
Colorist: Lola Knoblach
Online Finishing: Ramona Schopinski
Digital Effects: Julian Braun, Philipp Edner
Assistants Editor: Katrin Kremer, Moritz von Essen
Editing Studios: PICTORION das werk GmbH, vis:a:vis Filmproduktion GmbH

Film Processing: ARRI Schwarzfilm Berlin GmbH
Film Processing Supervisor: Mandy Rahn
Camera Equipment: Vantage Film GmbH
Grip Equipment: Gripartist, 24-6 Cine TV Services, S.L.
Light Equipment: ARRI Film & TV GmbH
Generator Supplier: Collado Service, S.L.
Costume Supplier: Sastreria Cornejo, S.L.
Props Supplier: Animales y Carruajes, S.L.
Weapon Supplier: Magnum 44, S.L.
SFX Supplier: Björn Friese
Helicopter: SAESA, S.L.
Insurance: A. Huber GmbH
Transport: Medias Reiseservice GmbH
Travelling: Agent AusZeit Reisebüro
Cargo Agent: Multi Logistics GmbH
URL to Related Project: Almería Decorados Cinematograficos, Almería, S.L., Hotel Almería Tryp Indalo
Film Stock: Kodak GmbH

Special Thanks to:
Janaina Pessoa, Angel Luis de la Cruz, Lele H. Colomer, Stephan Berg, Matthias Arndt, Christoph Krauss, Jeff Wood, Bina Daigeler, José Martinez, Jacob Santana Niera, Paz Lazaro, Josep Maynou, Juan Manuel Ramos, Wolf Bosse, Mandy Rahn, Marcel Neumann, Heike Parplies, Wassili Zygouris, Hanse Warns, Frank Kruse, Max Wigram, Joachim Reck, Joachim Abrell, Rolf Schmidt, Ulf Wrede, Andreas Teichner, Ute Baron, Julie Herbel, Kristin Rieber, Natalija Martinovic, Sergio Belinchon, Heinz-Peter Schwerfel, Sybille & Gundula Rosefeldt, Suni Hoffmann, Valeria Schwarz, Antonio Mesones, Silvia Kettler, Peter Kolbe, René George, Francisco Vidal, Paco Almazo Muñoz, Patricia Esteves Afonso, Lucas Fernandez, Mateo "El Burro"

Music:
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Requiem, Lacrimosa (performed by the Sonari Choir Berlin and the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir)
Lee Morse, Let's get friendly
The Andrew Sisters, I didn't know the gun was loaded

Commissioned by:
Bienal de Canarias

Supported by:
Kunstmuseum Bonn
Galería Leyendecker, Santa Cruz de Tenerife

The words spoken during the campfire conversation and in the saloon scene are quoted either from Western film classics or from speeches of more contemporary cowboys such as George W. Bush, Charlton Heston, John Mc Cain, 50 Cent and others

Shot in Fort Bravo Texas Hollywood, Almería, Spain and on the Canary Islands, 2009

Written, directed and produced by Julian Rosefeldt

All rights reserved © Julian Rosefeldt

Film & Video Works / American Night, 2009