Mâna care taie

HD Video, 31,33 min, color, sound, 2022

Somewhere between the Danube and the airport, in the Austrian suburbs, a micro history starts to unfold on a king size bed. Two tired women, mother and daughter, eat together after work. Monotonously picturesque, manipulated landscapes, interrupt the underlying silent drama of the seasonal worker’s daily life. Paid for one body part to perform the repetitive action of cutting, the only concern being the grapes, the relations between workers suffer under this transactional regime as  well. The daughter becomes authoritarian as she has to introduce the mother to the new realities of her temporary living situation. Buying an egg is a complex problem. The blurred memory of a mini revolt resurfaces. 

The footage for the work was collected by the artist while working as a seasonal worker in an Austrian vineyard in the fall of 2020. The camera was intentionally turned on, on two occasions, while the phone recorded snapshots throughout the work experience. Unscripted dialogues between the mother and the daughter are the result. A second layer of footage was created in the artist’s studio. 

A collage between narrative film, artistic essay or even youtube vlog, the video work addresses the social structures behind the ‘Austrian first quality’ wine. The narrative is built by the camera going into the intimate mother-daughter relationship. The resulting story opens up questions about the exploitation of bodies, enabled by the coloniality of power and the reminiscence of inter-imperial power dynamics in Europe.

Project made possible with the support of kültüř gemma!  and BMKÖS

Video Stills “Mâna care taie” (cutting hand) 2022 Alexandra Tatar

Video Stills “Mâna care taie” (cutting hand) 2022 Alexandra Tatar

Somewhere between the Danube and the airport, in the Austrian suburbs, a micro history starts to unfold on a king size bed. Two tired women, mother and daughter, eat together after work. Monotonously picturesque, manipulated landscapes, interrupt the underlying silent drama of the seasonal worker’s daily life. Paid for one body part to perform the repetitive action of cutting, the only concern being the grapes, the relations between workers suffer under this transactional regime as  well. The daughter becomes authoritarian as she has to introduce the mother to the new realities of her temporary living situation. Buying an egg is a complex problem. The blurred memory of a mini revolt resurfaces. 

The footage for the work was collected by the artist while working as a seasonal worker in an Austrian vineyard in the fall of 2020. The camera was intentionally turned on, on two occasions, while the phone recorded snapshots throughout the work experience. Unscripted dialogues between the mother and the daughter are the result. A second layer of footage was created in the artist’s studio. 

A collage between narrative film, artistic essay or even youtube vlog, the video work addresses the social structures behind the ‘Austrian first quality’ wine. The narrative is built by the camera going into the intimate mother-daughter relationship. The resulting story opens up questions about the exploitation of bodies, enabled by the coloniality of power and the reminiscence of inter-imperial power dynamics in Europe.

Project made possible with the support of kültüř gemma! and BMKÖS