Full Circle

Michael Schwab and Eduardo Padilha

Dialogue between Eduardo Padilha and Michael Schwab

E: I have something around 'pattern' that I am trying to get at - I don't see the pattern as a static and constructed thing. What I want of it is more the idea of a disruption that the pattern causes and to explore that.

M: The disruption of the pattern or the pattern as disruption?

E: The pattern creates the disruption. The reason why I am interested in camouflage is that it creates the disruption. If you repeat the pattern than you create a structure that's very static. If you explore the disruption it flows more. You can create a static repetition or you can make a disrupted pattern of meaning, but it flows it grows - from one work to another work and the whole work -

M: To me a 'pattern' basically says it is an intelligible structure. It is a rationality, which is there and has a life of its own. It can grow chaotically, but it might not grow. It looks like the moment it doesn't grow chaotically one can control it, one can count it - but when it grows chaotically, when it has this open structure, it actually feels as if one does not recognize a pattern, although the pattern is the seed. Camouflage, you don't quite recognise. You know it's camouflage, but you can't read it as it is too complicated. You can't count camouflage as you can count circles or lines - so the moment when a pattern is recognised it becomes arrested and contained in understanding.

E: The point besides the pattern is the social context. I think that's the two strong points, which are very clear together in our works.

M: There's one thing we've talked about last time, which I think is also quite important: the question of representation. The pattern is also a way to unwork representation, so the social aspect needn't be represented -

E: - to use pattern to break down the representation of the social.

M: We don't really want to represent the social dimension or domain, but rather we have to start with representational elements. The pattern disrupts that representation of the social, so that as a result the social is transformed in that process.

E: That is an important point to put clear - the material is initially displaced and through interference the quality of the material is given back.

M: The social at the start has a very representational value, but through the work of the pattern that representation of the social is unworked and the social becomes a different agent so that the social is not a representative. And this transformation of the social through the pattern is quite important for the work because we don't want to create metaphors of the social. Rather, the interference with the material and its representation opens up a different domain for the social. The pattern, basically, is a device.