Academic thesis

Christian Matthias Linus Imhoff: Nam June Paik: „Fish Flies on Sky” (1985/1995) – Documentation of the installation and development of a preservation strategy for 88 CRT TVs Back
Language: Original   -   Translation
Abstract: In 1985 the Museum Kunstpalast in Düsseldorf acquired Nam June Paiks, "father of video art", multimonitor-
installation Fish Flies on Sky. Since ist premiere in 1975, the work has been subject to constant
development and was presented at international venues. Tragically, the crowd pulling installation was
completely destroyed by a fire in 1993. In cooperation with Paik, it was later rebuilt on the same site. The
first topic of this work involves the retrospective documentation of the earlier expositions of Fish Flies on
Sky, as well as the technical documentation of the actual work. Discrepancies between the two versions at
the Museum Kunstpalast are uncovered and some of the video tapes of the former manifestation, which
were thought to be lost to the fire, are identified. The second part of this thesis is devoted to the
development of a preservation strategy for Fish Flies on Sky. The continuity of the installation is critically
endangered, as the CRT technology has become obsolete. After the collapse of the market it is hardy
possible to obtain repair services and spare parts. This specific problem is virulent in media art preservation,
but no practical solutions have been found yet. For this reason three concepts of emulating CRT-TVs are
being presented and implemented in prototypes for the first time.


  • academic institution: Technische Hochschule Köln
  • kind of theses:  Masterarbeit
  • main Tutor:  Prof. Dr. Gunnar Heydenreich
  • assistant Tutor:  Jochen Saueracker
  • date:  2014
  • Language:  German

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