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Lutz Dammbeck «Hommage à La Sarraz»
Lutz Dammbeck, «Hommage à La Sarraz», 1981
© Lutz Dammbeck
Poster for the performance in Dessau 1995

 Lutz Dammbeck
«Hommage à La Sarraz»

Dammbeck relocates the Leipzig-based artists' circle known as «Herbstsalon» to La Sarraz palace in Switzerland, which in 1929 was the venue of the legendary congress held by important protagonists of new, independent cinema as a forum to discuss issues such as elitist thinking, the taste of the masses, and the difference between art and life. One participant was the avant-garde filmmaker Walter Ruttman, who had already begun to produce abstract films for advertising purposes at a time when his co-pioneers Eggeling and Richter were still preoccupied with painting. All the same, Ruttman placed his talent at the disposal of Nazi propagandists during the Third Reich. Dammbeck reflects upon the durability of the notion we term «avant garde» by vacillating it between the extremes of Modernism and anti-modernism. «Hommage à La Sarraz» was at the core of the film footage deployed in Dammbeck's ‘Hercules Media Collage' of 1984/85.