Katharina Schmitt

The Molyneux Problem

01.11.2018 - 03.11.2018

Opening and premiere of the performance - 01.11.2018, 7pm

Text, concept, realisation: Katharina Schmitt
Music: Michal Rataj
Dramaturgic collaboration: Jakub Režný
Room: Pavel Svoboda
Performer: Jaschka Lämmert, Volker König
Co-organisation: Studio Hrdinů

Further performances
November 2, 2018 7pm
November 3, 2018 5pm and 7pm
During the day, a walk-in sound installation can be heard and seen in the EIGEN + ART Lab.

The Molyneux Problem deals with dreams of blind-born people: do they relate to visually based imagination? How do they sound? And how do narrative structures form in the dreams of people, who never had eyesight and whose subconscious mind does not express itself in images?

The starting point of the project was a series of interviews which Katharina Schmitt conducted with people who were born without eyesight in 2016 in Vienna and in Prague. Based on this series of interviews and the resulting audio material, Katharina Schmitt wrote a text, whilst Michal Rataj created a composition, describing a darkroom in which a blind woman meets a man who is able to see.

The focus on haptics, sound and spatial tension enables us to question the superiority of the visual. How much does one see, when one sees? How much does one see, when one doesn’t see anything?

The Molyneux Problem is a „work in progress“ based on a series of interviews made in 2016 with people who were born blind in Vienna and in Prague. A text written by Katharina Schmitt and a composition by Michal Rataj were created in 2017, which were turned in a radio play for the ORF and the Czech Radio under the direction of Katharina Schmitt. It is the first time that The Molyneux Problem will be presented as a performance at EIGEN + ART Lab, as well as a staging in the Studio Hrdinů in Prague from December onwards.

Katharina Schmitt studied theatre directing at the Prague Academy of Arts and works as a director and playwright. She has collaborated with many international theatres and festivals, such as the Prague National Theatre, the Thalia Theater Hamburg, the Schauspiel Leipzig, the Schauspiel Stuttgart, the Watermill Center New York, NODO Ostrava and the Munich Biennale for musical theatre among others. In her work as director, Katharina Schmitt focuses on immersive forms that oscilate between visual arts and theatre. Since 2012 she is an associate director at the theatre Studio Hrdinů, based in the Prague National Gallery and specialising in interdisciplinary formats. She also regularly works in opera and music theatre.

Supported by the Trustee-program EHF 2010 by the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and the Deutsch-Tschechischer Zukunftsfonds / Česko-německý fond budoucnosti

Photos: Peter Fabo