DeepDream Transmissions
by Vitjitua Ndjiharine

2023, Digital video with sound, Duration: 09:28

Vitjitua Ndjiharine (b. 1988) is a multidisciplinary visual artist whose work draws inspiration from different academic disciplines including history, cultural anthropology, mass media and communication to explore topics such as construction of identity and knowledge production. Using various painting and collaging techniques her compositions are layered with historical and socio-political contexts which connect the past/present through empathetic storytelling.

 In 2017, she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Studio Art from The City College of New York. In 2018 Vitjitua was awarded a research fellowship by the Gerda Henkel Foundation in collaboration with The Research Center for “Hamburg’s (Post-)Colonial Legacy, allowing her to  work in the archives of the Ethnological Museum in Hamburg and the National Archives of Namibia. In 2020 Vitjitua co-ordinated Art and History workshops with various artists and youth across Namibia. This project culminated in a group exhibition at the Frans Nambinga Art Training School in Havana, Windhoek. Vitjitua has previously presented her work in New York, Hamburg, Berlin, Belgrade, Zurich and Windhoek.

DeepDream Transmissions is a mesmerising and thought-provoking odyssey into a realm that blurs the boundaries of time and space. Viewers embark on an otherworldly adventure that weaves together fragmented sights, sounds and textures. The interconnectedness of cultural heritage, identity, our relationship to the land, and the longing for a place to call home lies at the heart of this enigmatic journey. 3D animations are artfully fragmented, and come to life, inviting viewers to contemplate the essence of materiality and existence.

This work further invites contemplation about the dispossession and displacement of people from the land. Disjointed footage of various landscapes, an abandonment settlement, buffalo at a watering hole and so much more immerse viewers in the exploration of disparate spaces, seeking connections and meaning amidst the vastness of the unknown. 

The accompanying soundscape further elevates the surreal experience, featuring a rich tapestry of audio elements. From the cryptic morse code and enigmatic alien communications to the haunting sirens of spaceships and the rhythmic hum of planes and jets taking off and landing, every sound becomes an integral part of the narrative. Radio transmission signals, oral histories, field recordings of nature, and soulful chants of people singing add depth to the emotional journey, as if revealing hidden layers of history and personal stories.

“DeepDream Transmissions” challenges viewers to question their perceptions of history, belonging, and the interconnectedness of human experiences. It invites us to embrace the surreal and explore the uncharted territories of the human spirit, all while seeking resonance in the distant past and an unknown future.

Sound: The sound in this film features recording in the field of the following people and voices: The Swakpmund Acapella Singers recorded during a public performance in Swakopmund, Namibia. Sir Ray and Nashilongweshipwe Mushaandja live performance at Goethe Institute, Windhoek. Mr. Tjitavi Kambausuka speaking at Waterberg, Otjozondjupa Region. Live performance of Hereroland at NTN in Windhoek Namibia

A special thanks to Banu Çiçek Tülü for helping me edit the sound for this film.