F.A.T. was put together by Magdalena Salner and Manuel Baumer as a consequence of a long-time artistic exchange. The collaboration in the field of musical composition and video art led to the realization that moving images and music act in the same ether. While their specific artistic material is fundamentally different, both art forms require the time as a carrier medium. In this regard, the term form plays a central role in F.A.T.. Through the temporal structuring of an intrinsically immaterial artistic material in time, a work of art receives its concrete form. The expansion in time is analogous to hammer and chisel when working a marble block.
The editing and manipulation trough time which the material undergoes leads to various processes and gives it a concrete shape through stretching, twisting, fragmentation, etc. While every time-based work naturally has such a form, the versatile potential of such a form is rarely exploited. Often the form in film and music only serves as a simple container for conceptual content. Apart from that there are numerous examples of works or artists, spread across the entire history of art and music, whose focus is on form exposed through time. Interestingly, especially in the field of European art music, a wealth of various complex formal models has developed over the centuries, which composers use and, in addition to the theory of harmony and counterpoint, one even speaks specifically of the theory of forms in music theory. After overcoming the tonality, the classical music of the 20th century even acts in excess in this temporal-formal area with sometimes very detailed and complex forms. Nevertheless the reception and perception of this level remains largely limited to a small group of experts of musicologists and music theorists.
The situation in other time-based art disciplines is quite similar. Abstract forms, structures and processes are a central component of countless art videos and films, but are too often overshadowed and overlooked in favor of concepts, plots and content. The result: misunderstood artists, a few delighted humanities scholars and a completely misinformed, unsuspecting and overwhelmed audience. Goal of F.A.T. it is to put more focus and awareness for this phenomenon of the form shaped by time for both artists and recipients.
While F.A.T. primarily represents the artistic collaboration between Magdalena Salner and Manuel Baumer, the project doubles as a kind of forum, magazine and artist collective. In this sense, review-like texts of examples of formally interesting works from art history and the present follow at irregular intervals. Different formal possibilities of time-based material should be explained, discussed and illustrated. Accordingly, over time, each project by F.A.T. Will be provided with increasingly detailed, textual elaboration and graphic representations in which the time-based forms and formal processes are to be conveyed and made accessible on a visual and acoustic level. The perception of time-based form is not something that can be taken for granted, but rather has to be learned and sharpened through experience. At the same time, however, it is theoretically accessible to everyone.
A concern of F.A.T. is to offer opportunities to develop this perception and to evoke more mindfulness for time-based form. In terms of this project, F.A.T. is open to artists, scientists and journalists who work in or are interested in this topic.