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seed #8 – The power of the 8

Oliver Wünsche. When engaging with falk.brvt’s work, it is impossible to get around the 8. One might think that the artist is exaggerating in his focus on the 8, maybe even going over the top in as far as that he has already defined the copyright 1994 until 2057 in terms of the 8.

64 years as an artist in whose work everything culminates in the 8. 8×8 pixels, 64x64cm, 8×8 works, even his date of birth ’08/27/1971′ comes to a checksum of 35=8, and, to boot, the number of syllables in the name ‘falk ba-ron rausch von trau-ben-berg’ is 8.

The 8 symbolizes infinity, the recurring, the path to perfection. 8 tones = 1 octave. The 8 as new beginning. The new week starts on day 8. There were 8 people on Noah’s ark. Digital storage is based on the 8. 8 bits = 1 byte.

So it does not come as a surprise that the rhythm of 8 keeps reappearing in falk’s life. “Life is fragmented and cannot ultimately be planned,” falk said in one of our long conversations. “The concept of the 8 is rhythm and structure to me in order to see myself time and again in new contexts and new expressive levels of interior states, as a representative of humankind.”

I know the artist falk von traubenberg since 2008 (!). In 2016 (eight years later), he approached me for advice on his artistic development. Today, in April, 16 months after the birth of falk.brvt, he asked me to write the eighth seed/update in this new era. So, I have taken a good close look at the artist and the person and now dare an attempt to introduce fbrvt in the context of the 8 and by means of his most recent concept of the remixes.

The consistency and determination with which falk.brvt pursues and develops the concept of the 8 is quite fascinating. It appears as that this concept repeatedly inspires falk to new experiments, discoveries, and variants that seem to be created effortlessly. Knowing falk is knowing that effortlessness is not his motto, but rather exploration, surprise, experimen- tation, being ready for the unforeseen, for what has not yet been seen. Works often manifest by pure coincidence after a long phase of testing and experimenting. Just like the remixes, where falk combines unprecedented contexts and relations within his own oeuvre. Currently, in the ongoing engagement with his own oeuvre, a new remix is created every week – every 8 days.

In the continuous flow, new correlations, new propositions become discernible. Like with puzzle pieces, visual and content-related references become apparent. Unexpected connections, other thought spaces, other dimensions open up – and are made accessible.

“I go through my work time and again, working with open results. I suddenly see things and textures that had not been planned ahead. What is yet to come I don’t know, I can’t calculate”, falk tells me. Whoever now has a notion, an idea of falk’s style of work and of the focus on the 8 that is all but coincidental, whoever grasps and engages with this artistic framework, is set to be able to expect quite a lot from the future, as collector and as viewer.

The demur that it might get boring after some time to only be working and thinking in the format of 64×64 may be met with this powerful reply: Imagine this – 8×8 works as a wall-filling polyptych in the Tate Modern Turbine Hall. Unlimited in size and combination possibilities.

Not only the walls of the Turbine Hall could be filled with falk’s works, but also the entire floor to go with it, without having to bend and mold the oeuvre, but simply in the consistent implementation and embodiment of the work multiplied by 8.

The power of the 8!

© Oliver Wünsche
Translation © Kristina von Bülow