Film clip © Nina Könnemann

Pleasure Beach

Nina Könnemann

  • Year 2001
  • Edition Edition 1/5 (+ 1 a. p.)
  • Material/Technique Single-channel video (color, sound)
  • Length 8' 30''
  • Category Media art
  • Collection Sammlung Goetz, Medienkunst, München

With her video Pleasure Beach (2001) Nina Könnemann takes us to an entertainment strip in Blackpool on the west coast of England. The seaside resort is considered the British version of Ballermann and attracts a party-loving audience of all ages, especially in the summer months. Compared to other seaside resorts, the price of accommodation and food in Blackpool is very inexpensive, making it a popular place for bachelor parties. Using a handheld camera, Könnemann captures the intensely heated mood on a stormy night. She mostly follows women who—in excited anticipation—are heavily made up and donning high heels and cheap, short costume dresses, like those one might see at a carnival. They drink alcohol to get in the mood, stage themselves and flirt with the camera. The atmosphere seems to change as the storm approaches. The women frantically rush from palace to place, hoping the night—which began with such promise—will still fulfill their dreams. By the end of the film, the waves are pounding on the promenade, police sirens are blaring, a girl is being held by her friends as she vomits in the street while a brightly lit tram—painted with a skull and crossbones and the words ‘Terror Train’ written on it—plows through the flooded quay like a ghost train. Könnemann named her work Pleasure Beach after the eponymous amusement park in Blackpool.

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