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7 May 2008

the non-feature

Black is Black

That’s the message on 7 May 2008.
“I heard somebody say, there cannot be anything darker than the darkest day, but it is not true, because it can be always worse and the worst is unimaginable. The 7 May 2008 is the beginning of the darkest period of my life. I was thinking, it couldn’t be worse when I fell into the coma at the end of 1998, but at that time the most beloved persons were still living, and they were saving my life and only through their neverending love, the fertile soil was prepared that I could wake up from the coma in June 1999. After 7 May 2008, everything was different, the most beloved persons were vanishing without any warning, leaving a desert of the absolute Black behind.”

On 7 May 2008, the Greek story starting on 1 May 2020 WOW Jubilee 2020 V – continues, and contiunued yesterday in Athens, Wilfried arrives at Thessaloniki airport and travels further on to Naoussa, a pictoresque town situated in the hills around Thessaloniki when the Naoussa shortfilm festival is opening on 8 May 2008 presenting one of his videos. When he is checking his emails after his arrival at the hotel, he finds one email of an unknown sender which after reading he identifies as coming from his sister telling him in a few words – their common mother had a stroke – he has to to return immediately – the mother might not survive. All the days, before Wilfried was departing from Cologne, he had felt extraordinary miserable and had weird feelings, when he was entering the plane to Thessaloniki he actually wanted to refuse because he had a vision, the plan might crash, his partner Micha was underway in California and Wilfried missed him so, such weird feelings always indicate, that something might be wrong, that something horrible unexpectedly would happen. Wilfried woke up in the middle of the night after he had a nightmare dreaming his Micha and his mother would be lying together in the morgue.

Before he went down to the breakfast where the festival director is waiting for him, Wilfried takes a look on his email accound finding an empty email coming from Micha’s secretary in Cologne. No word – no message, but when he is sitting in the breakfast room just telling the festival director he had to take the next plan back home, the hotel reception is announcing a phone call for Wilfried, and hardly holding the telephone handset to his ear, he is falling lifeless to the ground. After recovering, Wilfried tells the festival director, that not only his mother had a stroke, but his beloved Micha had a car accident in Los Angeles – he has to take the next plane back home, on the same evening when the festival is opening.

Yes, and from now on, nothing was like it had been before. Even if Wilfried’s mother survived physically the stroke, she was not able to continue a self-determined life, from now on Wilfried’s siblings were deciding – and decide against Wilfried and against the common mother. Driven by a life-long hate beginning in the very moment when Wilfried was born and the perspectives to lose all previous privileges, now while the common mother is unable to protect her youngest son anymore they see the chance for revenge. They prevent in sequence that Wilfried can visit his mother in the nursing home, they even told their mother, Wilfried would be dead.

Wilfried is in such a weak condition like never before, because when he returned to Cologne, he learned the truth about the car accident of his beloved Micha, on the way to the airport the taxi had an accident and both, the driver and Micha were dying and burnt in the exploding car. Losing on one day these both persons who made Wilfried survive during and after the coma (1998/1999), was too much for him, and what only a few people know – in sequence he had a dramatic social crash – however, nobody was noticing what was really happening to Wilfried, because he made his professional business as usual.

But ignoring the crashed private life couldn’t last long, after Wilfried had been afterwards attacked twice and nearly killed in Caracas in Octover 2008 und April 2009 in Casablanca, one year later on 7 May 2009, Wilfried – referred to the Cologne university insitute for traumatology – was set into an artificial coma during the following weeks, in order to reactivate the self-healing powers and to overcome the horrible traumatizations.

However, while only Wilfried’s physical body was recoving afterwards, his soul and his private life did not recover, but remained as black as they had becoming on 7 May 2008 without any warning. His professional life, however, continued the unusual career starting on 1 January 2000.

And, retrospectively seen, it can be stated that the human creature is a miracle, because even if everything goes worst, there is always a level remaining which is able to survive!

7 May 2008 was that fundamental caesura changing Wilfried course primarily also of his professional life, because he lost the music inside for many years. 2014 his mother was dying, it was on 1 May, and by coincidence the only left close friend living in Amsterdam, died the same day, and – like in his close relationships before, who all were dying earlier, as well, Wilfried experienced their last moments from distance but connected via a certain emotional-spiritual channel, which is characterizing Wilfried’s personality. In 2014, this spirtiual experience of the several days lasting dying process was weakening his immunity system so profoundly, that Wilfried got a deadly infection, which he survived only by losing his hearing for more than 6 months. In the beginning of 2015, this nightmare turned slowly to the better, and later in 2015 suddenly Wilfried felt again music inside indicating that his creativity returned. By chance, several incidents – Refugee crisis, the terror attacks in Paris etc were forcing Wilfried back to start new projects like the Refugee Film Collection, The Wake Up Memorial and a couple of other projects, and he started working again on his own art videos, which he had stopped 2008.

Yes, of course, also the time in between was marked by a certain creativity as a curator for CologneOFF festival and artvideoKOELN, but it is a different kind of creativity which does not require that typic music inside.

Schedule for 7 May 2020

  • •Now & After International Videoart Festival Moscow – 17 April – 12 May 2019
  • • *Museo National Arte Contemporanea Reina Sofia – 31 March – 8 May -“Violencia sin cuerpos”
  • •CologneOFF 2016 USA @ Torrance Art Museum – Los Angeles/CA – 2 April – 28 May 2016
  • •“Bivouac Project – The Big Switch: New Media, Film and Video” – Sumter County Gallery of Art (USA) – 2 April- 22 May 2009
  • •Version07 Festival – The Insurrection Internationale – – April 19 – May 6, 2007 – Chicago, USA
  • •Israeli Center for Digital Art Holon/Israel – 16 April – 16 July 2005
  • •ARTchSo Video Festival Rennes – 26 April – 9 May 2012
  • •“Proceso de Error” – 3rd International Experimental Video Festival – Valparaiso/Chile – 31 May – 4 June 2016
  • •SENEF – Seoul Festival for Internet & Film – 01 May -01 July 2005