Made in Germany, October 14th 2004.
While the Iraq war continues, a day’s sightseeing and the features of a German hotel provoke a stream of thoughts about events large and small.
Museum Piece is the second video in the “Hotel Diaries” series, a collection of late night recordings made in European hotel rooms which relate personal experiences to contemporary world events. Works in the series currently include Frozen War (Ireland, 2001), Museum Piece (Germany, 2004), Throwing Stones (Switzerland, 2004), B & B (England, 2005) and Pyramids (Netherlands 2006). They can be shown individually or as a chronological group.
“Using the smallest means to tell a great deal, Museum Piece is both a personal film and also a reflection on social and political issues, combining humour with serious commentary on past and present concerns. It brings to the foreground the difficulties of taking a position, facing the complex realities of our times.” International Jury Statement, 50th Cork International Film Festival, Ireland 2005 (Best International Short Film).
“…Never losing his lightness of touch and deadpan sense of humour , the artist presents us with a political commentary on the immediate context of the city of Berlin and its history and a critique of the media and its power to transmit information.” International Jury Statement, 11th Biennial of Moving Images, Geneva, Switzerland 2005 (Prix du Centre pour l’image contemporaine , Saint-Gervais Ge nè ve ).
“…Museum Piece is a seemingly simple but very precise film by and about John Smith. The film speaks in a unique way about the complexities of human existence in a world where we, the fortunate ones, try but cannot escape the world and the guilt created by our actions.” International Jury Statement, ‘One World’ International Human Rights Film Festival, Prague 2005 (Honourable Mention)