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OSH

Osh 18' DV 2003. Berlin, Germany.

English. Short Film, 18 mins

P: mmmmmfilms

D: Montenegro, Fisher, Olivares, Berlin, Germany


'OSH' is a fertility ritual made by mmmmm in a former Power Station (Berlin, Germany August 2003). It was inspired by the now extinct Selk'nam (indigenous people of Tierra del Fuego southern Chile). The original ritual 'Oshkonhaninh', was a phallic ritual in which the women of the group made tails from bull rushes for the men to use as substitute penises. The men formed a circle and slowly rotated chanting 'xas', the sound and speed of rotation reached a crescendo until finally the men's heads lowered and their tales rose up creating a visual group erection.


Appearances: Luna Montenegro, Felipe Luck, Adrian Fisher

Camera & editing: Gines Olivares

Sound: Adrian Fisher, samples from Selk'nam chants of tierra del fuego, mmmmm audiolibrary, guanaco audio by bob.

Thanks: Umspanwerk, Berlin, London Biennale, Nils, Chris, Emmi, wg Sorauer strasse 23, The British Library, Museo de Porvenir, Chile, Anne Chapman, Lola Kiepja



More Information:


In our re-working of this ritual we cycled naked around the streets of the Power Station neighborhood (Kreuzberg) chanting 'xas'. We used a 5000 Kg crane to pass a cigarette, a toothbrush and a chili pepper between us. The negotiation and use of these objects together with artifacts from the original Selk'nam ritual are fused to create a mutated hybrid contemporary ritual.


The everyday objects in the ritual are transformed into icons of our contemporary ritual, the mass produced becomes unique through this process and changes our relation towards mass consumption. It is an attempt to put the 'aura' (1) back into the artwork.


In the film OSH (18mins DVD) a red chili pepper swings gently against the female artistsí vagina to the text of the last surviving Selk'nam Shaman, Lola Kiepja.
The chilli is 'Chile' as defined by the shape of the geographical borders of the country. It is also red in relation to the most valued commodity of desire for the Selk'nam people (land would be traded to the colonialists in exchange for red objects and materials).
In a psychoanalytic sense it serves as the maternal phallus (2) in the eye of the onlooker, it reminds the fetishist of his own castration in the way that the colonialists destroyed the Selk'nam people in their own pathological commodity fetishism of land and property.
The process of re-evaluating the mass-produced, of embedding it with different times and contexts through actions and relations to the body forms the basis of our investigations into excess and consumption. It is in this process of transforming the mass-produced into a unique totemic object that the presence of the body becomes apparent.


The text near to the end of the film is translated from the original evoked by Lola Kiepja and recorded by Anne Chapman. Lola Kiepja was the last surviving female Shaman of The Selk'nam, she died in 1966.


Shamanic chant extract from Koin-xoon, a mythological cordillera and Chanem, a symbol of shamanistic power associated with the Northern Sky.

They do not give me the guanaco,
I want it.
I am alone.
I am astray.

They of infinity give it to me,
I receive it.

They of infinity speak to me
of the dog of the wind,
I follow the trail alone.

I am called from afar by the two Fathers
The shamans of the guanaco,
I am arriving alone

I am working the arrow of the two men,
They of infinity.

mmmmmfilms

Osh 18' DV 2003. Germany. Short Edit 50"