Mika Taanila: Aika & Aine DVD

Here's info about the release of Aika & Aine ("Time & Substance"), a 2005 DVD compilation of Mika Taanila's short films and documentaries "Optical Sound", "A Physical Ring", "The Future Is Not What It Used To Be", "Robocup99", "Futuro - A new stance for tomorrow". The DVD contains music by Erkki Kurenniemi, Jukka Ruohomäki, Sähkökvartetti, Ø and Ektroverde. It is subtitled in Finnish. Enclosed is a press release with all information. More information from http://www.reel23.com/ where you can also order the DVD.

Press release

Filmfreak Distributie presents:

Reel 23 – Life is data, progress is optional

After one look at this planet any visitor from outer space would say "I want to see the manager".
William S. Burroughs

A division of Filmfreak Distributie, REEL23 is a new, pan-European DVD label that sets out to explore freely the twilight between fact and fiction.

REEL23 believes that the truth, far from being a holy grail, has become an overrated commodity. We affectionately support the battle against objectivity. For truth is in the eye of the beholder.

Here's the plan: We'll offer a platform for ideas of independent minds and disturbing opinions. A series of copious DVD's creating new syntaxes and dismantling misconceptions, bringing the darker side of a postmodern society into the open.

You are invited to read and watch. To cut them up, mix and stir. It doesn't have to be pretty.

Please let us introduce you to our line-up:

R23.01 The Atrocity Exhibition by Jonathan Weiss

R23.02 No Maps for These Territories by Mark Neale

R23.03 Vergeef me (Forgive Me) by Cyrus Frisch

R23.04 Aika & Aine (Time & Matter) by Mika Taanila

R23.05. `Stereo' and `Crimes of the Future' by David Cronenberg

more to come soon….

Additional Data

J.G. Ballard, JFK, Marilyn Monroe, William Gibson, Jack Womack, J.G. Ballard, William Burroughs, Bono, The Edge, Ellen Ten Damme, Erkki Kurenniemi & music by Foetus (Jim Thirwell), Ø (Pan Sonic), Bauer, [The User], György Ligeti, Peter Rehberg, Ektroverde, U2 & more

File under

Machines, technology, bits, networks, futurism, revolutionary movements, utopia/dystopia, banality, virus, resistance, surrealism, media criticism, literature, cyberspace, violence …


For the Reel23-project Filmfreak Distributie assigned young Amsterdam-based designer Bas Mantel to make a website which would both reflect the feel and the content of the dvd's. For each film Bas Mantel made a graphical interpretation. Together with a director's statement, biographies, quotes, trailers, pics, articles and other added value, the interpretation is composed as a filmposter. This poster is reproduced as the dvd-booklet, containing more additional data, and is also entwined with the lay-out of the dvd-digipack with slipcase.

Experience http://www.reel23.com: an oldskool website for the broadband era.

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R23.04 Aika & Aine (Time & Matter) by Mika Taanila
Release date: 2005-24-09


A remarkable collection of short films and documentaries for the people of tomorrow. Come see the utopia of plastic architecture.
Discover the challenging world of Finnish scientist, artist and philosopher Erkki Kureniemmi, inventor of DIMI (Digital Musical Instruments) series. Witness mysterious scientific experiments, enjoy a symphony for matrix-printers and see a team of robots challenge the reigning world champion football team. Enter the unique and futuristic world of Finnish filmmaker Mika Taanila.

////Futuro – A New Stance for Tomorrow

Futuro is a journey back in time to our recent futuristic past. It's a documentary about the rise and fall of the plastic Futuro house, the story of a `Space Age' utopia that almost came true. Documentary turns the history of this forgotten milestone in Finnish design into a story full of international colour and drama. It traces the development of Suuronen's `purely mathematical idea' into a multipurpose commodity which is eventually destroyed by time.

////A Physical Ring

Attached to the ceiling, the film camera is aimed at a right angle downward and it reveals a scene in black and white. In the middle of the floor, there is a composition reminiscent of a moving cubistic sculpture. In the centre of the rectangular base, there is a circular board revolved by a belt outside the frame area. This section is encircled by a thin band stretching as far as the borders of the frame area: it vibrates elastically while the electronic soundtrack follows its rhythm. Are we looking at a weird electronic happening or a moving studio set for an old science fiction film?

///The Future's Not What It Used To Be

A documentary film about Erkki Kurenniemi (b. 1941), whose career represents a surprisingly natural blend of music, film, computers, robotics, science and art. His project of collecting everything around him will perhaps be the most significant of all his works. Kurenniemi records his thoughts, observations, objects and images constantly, with manic precision, with the ultimate goal of merging man and machine - reconstructing the human soul. Kurenniemi's story is a fascinating and forceful depiction of a forgotten visionary; it is significant because of the cultural history of the unique, never- before-seen archive material alone. The documentary includes footage of the unique DIMI-instruments developed by Kurenniemi, and segments from unfinished experimental short films from the 1960s. The Future is not what it used to be is a film about the 1960s avant-garde in music and film, the early history of microcomputers and the open questions of 21st century science.

////RoboCup '99

A sportfilm where the researchers of artificial intelligence share their vision of the future. The film shows the various stages of the third successive tournament, held at Stockholm City Conference Centre in 1999. It culminates in the middle sized robot's final between Sharif CE Teheran (Iran) and the Azzurra Robot Team (Italy).

////Optical Sound

Optical sound continues the series of films by Mika Taanila which deal with technology, humanity, and futuristic ideas. Office technology becomes obsolete very quickly. Old tools transform into musical instruments. The film is based on the Symphony # 2 for 12 Dot Matrix Printers, composed by [The User].

DVD details

Aspect Ratio: 4:3 & 16:9

Sound: Finnish, Swedish, English 2.0 & 5.1

Region: 0, Pal

Duration: 116 min 40 sec

Subtitles: English, Dutch, Finnish, French, German and Spanish

CAP: 24.99 euro

DVD extra's

Audio commentary on The Future Is Not What It Used To Be by Mika Taanila and Erkki Kurenniemi

Audio commentary on Optical Sound by [The User]

Additional data

Music by Ø (Pan Sonic), [The User], Peter Rehberg, Ektroverde, Erkki Kurenniemi

Mika Taanila will show Optical Sound and additional footage of at the Reel23 launch party on September 24th at the Veemvloer in Amsterdam

Pan Sonic performs in Rotterdam on the September 10 (Scandinavia+ Festival) and in Amsterdam on September 8 (Night of the Unexpected, Paradiso)

Robocup99 will be screened at the STRP-festival in Eindhoven (March 2006) Robocup2006 will be held in Eindhoven (The Netherlands)

Mika Taanila is also the director of `Thank You For The Music - elokuva muzakista / Thank You For The Music - A Film About Muzak' Biographies

////Director Mika Taanila

Born 1965 in Helsinki where he lives and works. Mika Taanila is an artist working fluently in the fields of documentary filmmaking and visual arts. His films deal with the the significant and alarming issues of human engineering and urban artificial surroundings. Taanila specializes on the futuristic ideas and utopias of contemporary science.

////Composer, philosopher & scientist Erkki Kurenniemi

Born 1941 in Hämeenlinna, Finland
Studies in mathematics, theoretical physics and philosophy at Helsinki University
Assistant, Inst. of Nuclear Physics, Research Inst. of Theoretical Physics
Developed the electronic music studio at the Institute of Musicology
Developed digital electronic music instruments 1965-74 (DIMI series)
Technical manager, Digelius Electronics Finland Oy
Works at experimental art exhibitions (as a member of the DIMENSION group)
Design of industrial robot control systems (at Oy W. Rosenlew Ab, Pori, Finland, 1976-79)
Design of industrial control systems (at Nokia Cable Machinery, 1980- 86)
Exhibit designer at Heureka, The Finnish Science Centre (1987-97), manager, exhibition design (1997-1998)
Design of "The World of Sound" exhibition on sound, hearing, acoustics, and music
Design of "Structures" exhibition on geometry, topology, strength of structures
Design of exhibits for the following temporary exhibitions: "Thinking machines" (on information technology and artificial intelligence), "Balance?" (on environmental problems), "Crime and Fake" (on forensic science). Design of travelling exhibitions "Children's Science Centre", "Illusions" (sensory illusions, structure and operation of the brain, modern methods of brain research, sleep research).
Design of "New Materials" exhibition.
Design of "Open Questions (of Science)" exhibition.
Electronic music compositions (1963 - 1980)

Music performances (tape or live)

Jyväskylä Summer festival, 1963, 1964

Electronic music concerts in Europe

Oslo 1973, intermedia work Deal (with Jukka Ruohomäki)

Oulu, 1974, Dimi-O as soloist of Oulu City Orchestra

Other works in exhibitions (with the DIMENSIO experimental artist group)

Wäinö Aaltonen museum, Turku, 1974

Dimi-T "Electroencephalohone" brain EEG controlled oscillator

Tampere Museum of Modern Art, 1973 - Dimi-O video organ

DatArt exhibition, TM-galleria, 1982 - computer graphics animations

Dimensio 10th anniversary exhibition, Helsinki Kunsthalle, 1982

"Master Chaynjis, the cursing robot"

(Free-moving dog size robot with speech synthesizer and Apple ][ control

- killed by a religious fanatic.)

Computer animations retrospective at:

Otso-gallery, Espoo

Rauma Art Museum

Kuopio Art Museum

Oil paintings and photography (Elonkorjaajat group), various sites

Pan sonic plays Dimi, Avanto festival 2002, Kiasma, Helsinki

Deal, intermedia video ballet, Avanto festival 2002, Kiasma

Pan sonic plays Dimi, Venice biennale, 2003

Pan sonic plays Dimi, Berlin biennale 2004. Karlsruhe ZKM


////Optinen ääni

////Optical Sound

director, editor, script: Mika Taanila
cinematography, script: Jussi Eerola

music: [The User]

////Tulevaisuus ei ole entisensä
////Future Is Not What It Used To Be

director, script: Mika Taanila

cinematographer: Jussi Eerola

sound design: Olli Huhtanen

music: Erkki Kurenniemi, Jukka Ruohomäki, Sähkökvartetti, György Ligeti

////Fysikaalinen rengas

////A Physical Ring

director: Mika Taanila
music: Ø
special effects cinematography: Jussi Eerola


director, editor: Mika Taanila

cinematography: Jussi Eerola

sound design: Olli Huhtanen

music: Rehberg & Bauer, Shizuo, Christoph de Babalon

/////Futuro - tulevaisuuden olotila
/////Futuro – A New Stance for Tomorrow
director, editor: Mika Taanila

screenplay and research: Marko Home, Mika Taanila cinematography: Jussi Eerola
sound design: Olli Huhtanen
original music score: Ektroverde

mika taanila