Meanwhile I'm doing exercise, 2016

Audiovisual work of 25 video fragments and 100 photos.
22min35s, 2017

The video ‘Meanwhile I’m doing exercise’ is the result of a journey I undertook in 2016 in which I followed the ancient walking route of the Via Egnatia, which runs from Durres, Albania to Istanbul, Turkey. This road has existed since Roman times and has a long history: the road has been used by traders, tourists and recently by refugees crossing the Balkan region in order to reach Western Europe.

At that time the so-called ‘migration crisis’ was at its peak. Parts of the ancient walking route were blocked for refugees by means of fences and border patrols. The video ‘Meanwhile I’m doing exercise’ shows however a different picture of the refugee crisis than the news media do. I primarily point my camera to the daily activities of the people who crossed my path, being it the local residents, a policemen or demonstrators etc Against the background of important political events, I captured new and old habits in a poetic way.

Recensie over o.a dit werk  > De Volkskrant 2020

..." Veelzeggend is Olthetens observatie van een priester, die langs de zee loopt te telefoneren. Je hoort haar aan een reisgenoot vertellen waarom die man zo bijzonder was: omdat hij een belangrijk spiritueel gesprek aan het voeren was en tegelijkertijd, zo zei hij, aan lichaamsbeweging deed. ‘Meanwhile I’m doing exercise’ – het leven is een aaneenschakeling van wonderschone, arbitraire bewegingen, en Paulien Oltheten is hun chroniqueur, zonder wie ze jammerlijk onopgemerkt zouden blijven."

Dog, still of video, Skopje (MK), 2016

Feet, Photo, Athens ( GR), 2016

Baskets ( mimicry), Photo, Boedapest  (HU), 2016

Kapitalism, still of video, Thessaloniki (GR), 2016

Handglove, Photo,Thessaloniki (GR), 2016

Merkel, still of video, Munchen (DE), 2016

Jacket,Photo, Tirana (AL), 2016

The Sea, Photo, Thessaloniki (GR), 2016

NON, still of video, Athens (GR), 2016

Statue, still of video, Boedapest (HU), 2016

Excerpt 'Meanwhile I'm doing exercise'.

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© Paulien Oltheten, 2021