The exhibition HOTEL ANNELIE turns towards a rare image of modern Germany the meaning of which far exceeds its geographical boundaries. Media artist and director Antej Farac a.k.a. Tito Lee happened to be living next to a hostel, Hotel Annelie in Munich which offered modest accommodation for homeless people, small time crooks, junkies and social outsiders. His insights show the gulf between real poverty and Germany’s commonly known affluence. Over the period of several years he was working incessantly in this neighbourhood and, incorporating the inhabitants of Annelie, completed the multi-media art project called HOTEL ANNELIE.
Using various forms of expression, he photographed, video taped, collected sound bites and set up performances using the inhabitants as living material. He produced a documentary, „Mixuga“, on a transsexual truck driver named Laura, and invited artists such as German photographer Martin Fengel and filmmaker Chris Valentien to work in these precarious surroundings. And finally he realized the feature film ANNELIE, which premiered in Busan, Korea makes up the biggest part of this ‚Gesamtkunstwerk’. His goal is simple and of universal value: ‚Hotel Annelie’ gives insight into a section of German reality, archiving and conserving conditions in a world faced with its demise.
The hostel gives shelter to a wide spectrum of misfits who have formed a second level society, an unconnected subdivision with its own functioning community spirit. This small part of Germany seems to coexist independently next to its well-to-do big brother, and yet is part of the larger whole. The show examines the social landscape of a questionable subculture with scrutiny and a knowing smile, discovering a showcase of our human existence.
Dr. Clarence Cook Jr.
THE EXHIBITION IN CHURCH BRUDER KLAUS
The ‚godfather of neoconservatism‘, Author Irving Kristol reasons ‚for those who are experiencing a Christian impulse, an impulse toward Imitatio Christi which could lean toward socialism (...) is the attitude of Christianity toward the poor‘. The strong relationship between early Christianity and poverty makes churches the right place for this exhibition.
With installations, video art and performances Tito Lee took the image of his "Annelieaner" to the church Bruder Klaus in Biel. Panel discussions, workshops and prayers for dialogue supported the combination of the modern fate with motifs of traditional, religious art. The series of large-scale light boxes to Psalm 23 "The Lord is my shepherd - I shall not want" shook not only the nerve of the Christian faith, but led to conversations between people experiencing poverty and the bishop of Basel.
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ANNELIE - THE MOVIE
The feature film ANNELIE is an essential part of the transmedial exhibition HOTEL ANNELIE. After its release the movie was received by an enthusiastic audience across the globe. ANNELIE premiered, as first Swiss film ever, at the Busan International Film Festival, the most significant film event in Asia. Subsequent screenings and awards on renowned Festivals like in Locarno, Hof and Vancouver were followed by overwhelmed critics from experts. ANNELIE was highlighted as a "radical, hart-hitting film", as "unpredictable bulldozer" and as an "outstanding experience". With its "radical impertinence and with rock n'roll energy" the movie gained a high international recognition and reached, according to outstanding critics, cult status in independent filmmaking.
ANNELIE is an old boarding house in Munich that has long since fallen into disrepair. When paying customers stopped coming, it was leased by the City as temporary accommodation for homeless people and welfare cases. But “temporary” has turned into more than a decade for some residents, and the long wait has inevitably brought some strange characters together. All seen as beyond hope, jobless for years, “Annelie” is their home.
Max is one of them. He used to be an actor, a child star in fact, but now he’s a junky and applies his talent solely to professional sponging. Another resident runs a struggling kiosk, and his other half keeps them both in the black by selling her body. Max finds hope for a new beginning when he starts up an affair with the beautiful owner of a swingers’ club, but an incident with a dead body turns everything upside down. In 2012, the City decides to close “Annelie” down and demolish the whole building, swingers’ club and all. The news sends the residents into a panic.
While Max’s drug addiction drags him ever lower, the other members of the unlikely Annelie family – drunks, junkies, small-time crooks, poachers – must pull together one last time. With the determination of people who have nothing left to lose, they kidnap a famous rock band. The story builds to a bizarre climax in which bitter reality reveals itself to be a fleeting dream.