Making Nothing Happen presents the work of internationally exhibited and widely acclaimed expatriate Czech artist Pavel Büchler.
In urbane and incisive dialogue with Beckett, Kafka, Cage and Warhol, Büchler reframes their classic modernist gestures with insightful attention to the specifics of media and the overlooked materiality of the everyday.
Making Nothing Happen combines audio documentation, installation photographs, explanatory text, in-depth interviews and critical commentary, presenting Büchler’s work with a sly and witty stylistic nod to Büchler’s own slyly humorous conceptual style.
Composed with the self-cancelling rhythm of systole and diastole; the inhalation of vaporizing nicotine followed by an exhalating sigh; the entropic spread of bureaucratic reports and the ’pataphysical reorganisations of conceptual art; the telling retelling of a joke about repetition; bursts of applause and measures of silence; marking and erasure (and the marking of erasure) – the film organises its materials in a series of carefully balanced pairings.
Accompanying the DVD, a 28-page booklet by celebrated American critic Craig Dworkin reviews almost one hundred compositions and performances of silent music – from Cage’s 4’33” to Büchler’s 3’34” – in a comprehensive survey of the best music you’ll never hear.