In the IBB Video Space

Ginan Seidl is showing two quite different works at the Video Space: “Spin” is about the phenomenon of rotation. Seidl uses this as a basis to ask questions about how we perceive things and the boundaries of our knowledge. “Boy” is the result of a collaboration with Yalda Afsah. It observes two Afghan women who, for different reasons, live outside traditional gender roles.

„Spin“ (2017, 80 Min.)

“Spin” (2017, 80 min.) is an essay film that negotiates a path between two different world views. On the one hand, Seidl looks at meditation through dance in Sufism. In this spiritual practice of Islam, the body whirls to achieve a transcendental state. The aim is to get in touch with a divine entity. The other central theme in this work is “spin” in quantum mechanics. Here the word refers to the intrinsic angular momentum carried by particles. Interestingly, this field of natural science concerns knowledge of which we can have no empirical certainty: spin is a theoretical construct that can only be represented in formal mathematical terms – and it operates at the boundaries of our knowledge.

Video still: Ginan Seidl/Yalda Afsah, Boy, 2015

Ginan Seidl/Yalda Afsah, Boy, 2015

© Ginan Seidl/Yalda Afsah
Courtesy Ginan Seidl/Yalda Afsah

Video still: Ginan Seidl, Spin, 2017

Ginan Seidl, Spin, 2017

© Ginan Seidl
Courtesy Ginan Seidl

„Boy“ (2015, 30 Min.)

“Boy” (2015, 30 min.), the result of a collaboration with Yalda Afsah, follows Farahnaz, an Afghan girl raised as a boy in accordance with the tradition of “bacha posh”. Now, as a teenager, she does not want to return to life as a woman. The film also tells the story of Elaha Soroor, a successful Afghan singer who has moved to London. When she was younger she would dress as a boy to benefit temporarily from greater liberty. This work highlights complex questions around gender, identity and personal freedom in Afghan society before the Taliban took over in 2021.


Ginan Seidl was born in Berlin in 1984. She studied art, focusing on sculpture and new media, in Halle, Berlin and Mexico. Her work has been screened, for example, at the NRW Forum in Dusseldorf, the Kunstmuseum in Magdeburg, the Berlinale and Tampere Film Festival.

IBB Video Space

Since 2011 the IBB Video Space has been screening artists who work with time-based media. The programme, which changes every month, features not only established names in contemporary video art but also up-and-coming artists rarely seen in museums to date. For these, the Berlinische Galerie seeks to facilitate an institutional début. Each month brings a new encounter with work that raises questions about the medium and about social or political issues. Importance is attached to including marginalised perspectives and to shedding light on the impact of power structures.

This project has been facilitated by Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB)

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