12 June - 8 January 2017
The interactive documentary 51 Sprints recounts the history of one of the great highlights of the modern Olympic Games: the 100-metre sprint. This history is, of course, connected with record-breaking achievements and legendary finals, but in 51 Sprints the emphasis is on the athletes as symbolic figures who represent their nation, race or gender.
The entire Olympic event – which promotes the idea of equality for all – has increasingly become a projection screen for national status, the superiority of systems, the ultimate physical preparation and the emancipation of minorities. The intensity of the sprint finals makes the 100-metre race especially mediagenic, and it offers the most distinct platform to confront the rest of the world with such issues.
Linear or interactive
51 Sprints shines a critical light on the media-dominated reality of the Olympic Games by incorporating a single recording of each sprint final (men’s, women’s and paralympians) in two different narrative structures – one linear and one interactive – between which the viewer can alternate. In the linear narrative, which deals with five individual storylines around gender, nationality, class, race and the body, the original film footage is not manipulated. In the interactive version the footage has been manipulated so that athletes from different finals can ‘meet’ each other on a virtual track. A range of data, such as the average speed of an American, Jamaican or Kenyan athlete, plays an important part.
Preview of 51 Sprints at the Rotterdam Sport Film Festival
During the Rotterdam Sport Film Festival (8-9 April) the makers of the documentary - Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, Yuri Veerman and Random Studio – will present the project prior to the screening of the film Usain Bolt: The Fastest Man Alive. There will be an open Q&A session with designer and scriptwriter Yuri Veerman on Friday 8 April 2016 at 10:30 and on Saturday 9 April 2016 at 15:00 there will be a discussion with the initiator of the documentary, Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, expert in digital culture at Het Nieuwe Instituut.
Location: Cinerama Filmtheater, Westblaak 18, Rotterdam
More information: www.sportfilmfestivalrotterdam.nl
Premiere of 51 Sprints
51 Sprints will be on show at Het Nieuwe Instituut from 12 June 2016. The documentary can also be viewed online on the institute's website. 51 Sprints is part of a programme of exhibitions and activities around the theme of the Olympic Games.
Exhibitions and activities programme related to the Olympic Games
For Het Nieuwe Instituut, the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro have provided a springboard for devoting a large part of its programming in 2016 to the human body. Not only the physical achievements of individual athletes but also the crowds of people who will be monitored, analysed and manipulated as a collective body by advanced technologies: 24 hours a day. Technological innovations have created a situation in which the body of the citizen and that of the state, the city and the public realm can be more efficiently moulded into an ideal image. The body is being designed at all levels and media play a crucial role in recording and propagating these innovations.
The programme comprises the following exhibitions:
- The Life Fair. New Body Products
- Control Syntax Rio. Monitoring the Collective Body
- Space Embodied. The Russian Art of Movement 1920–1930
- 51 Sprints
- Munich 1972. The Design of a Democratic Body
- Platform. Body/Space
Note for editors:
For more information and/or images please contact Ester Martens, Het Nieuwe Instituut Department of Marketing, Communications and Commerce by email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone +31 (0)10 440 1268. On 11 June 2016 at 16:00 Het Nieuwe Instituut's new exhibition programme will officially open, including a premiere of 51 Sprints. Please send an e-mail if you are interested.
See also the webmagazine 51 Sprints
100 metre sprint final with Fanny Blankers-Koen. Olympic Games, London, 1948. Photographer unknown. © Bettmann/CORBIS
Oscar Pistorius during the 100 metre sprint final, Paralympic Games, London, 2012. ParalympicSport TV, 7 September 2012.