Presenting the artist in residence: Leonhard Müllner from the media art collective Total Refusal

22.2.2024. in 19h

In February and July, with the support of the Culture Department of the Styria Region and as part of the Kamov Residency Program, Austrian artist Leonhard Müllner will be staying in Rijeka. On Thursday, Feb. 22, starting at 7 p.m., Müllner will be presenting his artwork at MMSU

Leonhard Müllner is a visual artist, media art researcher and co-founder of the media art guerrilla group Total Refusal. The pseudo-Marxist collective Total Refusal repurposes elements of video games and creates political narratives in the form of video, interventions, performances and lectures, having garnered more than 50 awards, including the European Film Award and the Award for Best Short Film Director at the Locarno Film Festival.

foto: Anna Šolcová

Leonhard is currently working with his colleagues Robin Klengel and Michael Stumpf on the collective’s first feature film called “Money is a Form of Speech”. In the film, they appropriate the world of a high-budget shooter game that recreates Washington DC in detail, but instead of engaging in combat, they stage a lecture ballet that explores the relationship between capitalism and democracy. During the lecture at the MMSU, Müllner will also talk about his earlier research and the dynamics of the largest and most conservative mass media industry. In addition, he will screen and discuss the film “Hardly Working”, which won the European Film Award in 2023. “Hardly Working” by Total Refusal foregrounds non-player characters (NPCs) inhabiting hyperreal video games and follows their Sisyphean daily work with ethnographic precision.

Support: Cultural Department of the Styria Region, City of Rijeka

Photo: Total Refusal: “Money is a Form of Speech”, video still