Daniel Burkhardt: Semiotics of the City

HMKV Video of the Month


01– 30 December 2023

The city is not. Not because of a hypothetical, physical absence — the city is well present — but because it escapes naming.  (Johannes Binotto and Andri Gerber)

In “Semiotics of the City”, shots of urban situations flicker past in rapid succession. They are underlaid by computer-generated voices that enumerate the audio-visual elements they contain. The result is a close-meshed network of terms and categories whose sense of representing the depicted urbanity as completely as possible is taken ad absurdum. (Daniel Burkhardt)

Selected by Cornelius Ferber (HMKV)

Daniel Burkhardt

Daniel Burkhardt was born in 1977 in Bochum, Germany. He studied Media Art at the Academy of Media Arts Cologne (KHM).

His video and audio visual installations playful and ingeniously expose human perception as the driving motor behind the construction of meaning.

Since 2004, his work has regularly been included in a wide range of exhibitions and screenings at museums, art spaces and film festivals including the Centre Pompidou Paris, the Museum Reina Sofia Madrid, the Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt, the New York Video Festival, the International Film Festival Rotterdam and the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. In 2009 he presented his first major solo exhibition at the Glaskasten Marl Sculpture Museum. This was followed by further solo exhibitions at the Zendai Contemporary Art Exhibition Hall in Shanghai and the Kunstverein Bochum. Daniel Burkhardt has received numerous awards including the GWK Sponsorship Award, the Marl Video Art Award and a scholarship by the Stiftung Kunstfonds. In 2015 he won the main award for film and video at the Stuttgarter Filmwinter and in 2020 the experimental award at the Bolton International Film Festival.

Find out more about the artist:



01–30 December 2023

In the series “HMKV Video of the Month” HMKV presents current video works by international artists in monthly rotation – selected by Inke Arns and Cornelius Ferber.

Daniel Burkhardt

Semiotics of the City

video, colour, stereo, 4:03 min., 2020