The video work Winterreise chronicles the tale of the lowland gorilla Katharina Wisnierska and her life in Bavaria, Germany. At an early age, around the time when the Moon suddenly and mysteriously disappears from its orbit around the Earth, Katharina develops an interest in flying, and after flying planes and parachutes becomes a competitive paraglider. Katharina’s growing connection to birds and the Moon becomes a consolation in a world where she feels like an outsider. In Bergström Hyldahl’s fairytale, Katharina’s dream of flying carries her further than she could ever imagine, while at the same time inevitably towards the end of her short life.
Winterreise is to a great extent driven by music, partly by Franz Schubert´s piano concerto with the same title, creating an intense film where fantasy, music and natural phenomena are intertwined in an imaginative story about longing, social exclusion and loss. As in previous works by Bergström Hyldahl, the interplay between gravity and humour keeps the viewer off balance. Working with computer-generated imagery as well as a handheld camera, Johan Bergström Hyldahl combines fantastical fiction with a documentary narration. In parallel to the film, the project features photographic works in sculptural frames. In Bergström Hyldahl’s contemporary landscapes, Caspar David Friedrich and the romantic tradition are unmistakably present in capturing the mystery of nature.
Photos: Jean-Baptiste Béranger