Interview: 10 questions
1. Tell me something about your life and the educational background.
NOK: Education completely disordered, life is the lesson, autodidact.
T: We, Theme Bannenberg & Nok Snel, are a Dutch female art couple. We are adventurers down to the bone. Where ever we roam the direct environment is the set for inspiration. The concept of T&NOK is opposite and spitting images. Our drive feeds on confrontation. The result is photography, objects, words, installations, paintings and since 2008, also videos.
2. When, how and why started you filming?
NOK: When I opened my eyes.
T: Producing videos is writing a book. It unites word, image and sound. Since the digital age there’s no hold to it.
3. How did you come to the topic of Shoah and what does Shoah or dealing with “collective trauma caused by totalitarianism” mean to you?
NOK: I am a postwar-child of a Jewish mother who survived the Japanese camps in Indonesia during the second world war. At home that war went on. Ten years ago my mother finaly committed suicide at the age of 72.
T: In my childhood I am sexualy abused by a roman catholic priest who had a relationship with my mother untill he died in 2011.
Art is inseparably linked to our lives. NOK and I started a video series of #breakthesilence projects;
BEHIND CLOSED DOORS (2010) reflects the research of the inner courage, the possibilities and limits, looking for affection and interpersonal contact. Using the naked body as language/communication tool it symbolizes the innocence which is facing old scars by walking through infinitely interconnected past and present.
HOLY SHIT (2012) exposes one long nightmare of sexual abuse by a pedo-priest of a dominant and isolated institute, the roman catholic church.
ONE MINUTE SILENCE (2012) The National Dachau monument is a memorial to the Dutch victims of the Dachau concentration camp. It is located in the Amsterdam Forest. The monument was designed by artist Niek Kemps. The road is uneven, which symbolizes that the prisoners had to walk on uneven footwear. In the blue stone are the names of 500 concentration camps and outside camps chiseled.
UNRAVELING (2013) My camp, your camp, everyone has her/his camp. Dachau – Germany was the model camp (1933-1945). Nok’s Mother was caught in Indonesia in a Japanese camp (1942-1945). Nok experiences her second generation post-war camp (1961-1993). T experiences her sexual abuse camp (1957-1969).
NOK&T unravel the cruel boundries of humankind.
4. How do you develop your films, do you follow certain principles, styles etc?
NOK: No principles. Own style.
T: I love series. We act spontaneously. We are eachothers sounding board. That’s our strenght.
5. Tell me something about the technical equipment you use.
NOK: I must think about that.
T: A photo and video camera, a computer and a variable music/video editing program will do the trick.
6. What are the chances of the digital video technologies for creating art using “moving images” generally, and for you personally?
NOK: Art and moving images is (still) booming. I see a great market.
T: Sufficient. In general and personal.
7. How do you finance your films?
NOK: If it should I drink water.
8. Do you work individually as a video artist/film maker or do you work in a team?
NOK: I work with Theme.
T: NOK is a TEAM.
9. Who or what has a lasting influence on your film/video making?
NOK: Pride and beauty.
T: Former TV series such as Ivanhoe, Rawhide, Kapitein Zeppos, The Avengers.
10. What are your future plans or dreams as a film/video maker?
NOK: To become.
T: A Happy End.
Can works of yours viewed online besides on the CologneOFF platform? Where?