Sender and Receiver



In his video work Sender and Receiver (2020), Jankowski gives a platform to those who society has cast as the “angels” of the 2020 pandemic: The so-called essential workers. Unnoticed and coming from an apparently alternative reality, these workers, often underrecognized fixtures of society, appear in selected television clips dressed in the kind of protective gear that the Corona-pandemic has made necessary for safety reasons on set. They then take on a metaphysical form of transmission, inspired by Wim Wender’s film classic Der Himmel über Berlin (Wings of desire), for affect and emotion: The internal voices of the essential workers’ are telepathically impressed into the ecosystem of typical Thai and German TV formats. The protagonists of the show lend their voices to express the worker’s experiences during the pandemic in form of quotes extracted from personal interviews previously held by the artist. As second layers these audio sequences are then audible on top of the original plot lines of the show. Through this intervention, idiosyncratic narratives unfold synchronously with the regular TV script, and – for a brief moment – they overlay the otherwise intact world of everyday television. The excerpts correspond in part directly with the actual content of the program in a coincidental and tension-filled manner. For the duration of their brief appearance on screen, the workers are given the definitional sovereignty over a subjectively fragmented present, which has been broadcast in part to millions of households worldwide. The work was produced in collaboration with Fluentum and the Bangkok Art Biennial 2020.

Sender and Receiver bei Bild Live Die Richtigen Fragen mit Gesundheitsminister Jens Spahn© Wolf Lux@wolf_lux_photography
Sender and Receiver bei AMARIN 34TV Z-Story
Sender and Receiver bei ZDF Mittagsmagazin mit Jana Pareigis, ©ChristianJankowski