Wasser, view of the collective exhibition Bachelard contemporain, La Fab., Paris, 2023. Photo © Rebecca Fanuele / La Fab.

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A visual essay on water and its different states, the hydraulic forces, the transformation of the flow into energy and the devices of metamorphosis, through a musical and mysterious journey.

Short Synopsis

Wasser is a series of five short experimental films about water and its different states, the hydraulic force, the transformation of the flow into energy and the devices of metamorphosis. Wasser is both a musical (soundtrack by Khaki Blazer, Raymonde, Andreas O. Hirsch, The Dead Mauriacs, Richard Pinhas) and a mysterious and inner journey, forming a poetic and powerful visual essay.

Presentation of the series

Wasser is a series of five short experimental films about water and its states, hydraulic forces (Wasserkraft), the transformation of flow into energy and metamorphosis dispositives.

Made with an iPhone only, the films that form Wasser were mainly written at the time of their editing, from several thousand rushes and images also made by other people.

Wasser proposes a plunge into the waves based on the myth of the Bachelor Machines, which is the main theme of research of the director, and more particularly the tidal, astronomical Bachelor machine that supplies energy to the island of Morel’s Invention, the novel by Adolfo Bioy Casares published in 1940 in Argentina.

Filmed mainly in France, Germany, Iceland and Switzerland in 2019, Wasser invites us to travel through the different states of water. The series also invites us to observe its transformations, in an analogical writing that also deals with the transformation of the production of subjectivity into the production of artworks, and generally the transformation of current into power.

With a vision coming from the field of Aesthetics, but also extremely contemporary on the destruction of the ecosystem and the transformation of the water networks, the director continues through this film her research on what allows, opens and orientates transformations, with also a pronounced interest in the archaeology of machines, media and projection mechanisms.

Experimental film that can be presented both in classical film screening (single screen) and as expanded cinema (5-monitors or screens), Wasser is a project that can be presented in several settings, including exhibitions and presentations in contemporary art, festivals and experimental film programmes, but also in musical programmes because of the importance of music in its making, with the participation of Khaki Blazer, The Dead Mauriacs, Andreas O. Hirsch, Raymonde and Richard Pinhas to the soundtrack.

Without dialogues, the purpose of the series is to touch through mystery, emotion but also the superimpositions and circulations between the different levels of reading of the films, in order to bring people, at their turn, to their own transformations.

Screenings and exhibitions

13.09.21 Cafe OTO, London, UK

19.09.21 Petit Bain, Paris, France (with Sonic Boom)

22.09.21 L’Autre Canal, Nancy, France (with Sonic Boom)

01-02.10.21 Stadt im Fluss / Komma, Esslingen, Germany

12.11.21-13.02.22 Instants Vidéo / La Friche Belle de Mai, Marseille, France (installation, with Goethe Institut Marseille)

11.12.21 Palace, St.Gallen, Switzerland (with Luzius Schuler)

08.04.22 Frameless, Munich, Germany

05.07.22 Sajeta festival, Tolmin, Slovenia

22.10.22 OORtreders, Pelt, Belgium

25.11-05.12.22 Station Station, Paris, France

28.01.23 Non-Event / Goethe-Institut Boston, Boston, MA, USA

02.02.23 Nationale, Portland, OR, USA

17.02-30.04.23 Bachelard contemporain / La Fab, Paris, France

Contact for screenings and exhibitions: mpb@studiowalter.com

Marie-Pierre Bonniol photographed by Bernadette Bertin
Indre Histoire d’Île, Indret, France, 2019

About the director

“I try, in my films, to turn reality into magic, or at least to find its flaws and potentialities, and to transform what surrounds me in the same way that literature does.”

Born in 1978 in Marseille, Marie-Pierre Bonniol is an artist, curator and producer. She’s graduated in Visual arts (University of Aix-Marseille) and in Aesthetics and Sciences of Art (University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne). Since 2017, she is behind artworks filmed from her mobile phone only, assembling films captured in her daily life and during residencies around her research themes and obsessions, such as energy transformations, the myth of Bachelor machines, dispositives and the power of mysteries. Already the author of some twenty videos, often with strong links to music, her work has been presented in institutions (ZKM, Le Lieu Unique, the National Library of Argentina), exhibitions, programmes and festivals. In 2020, she began a collaboration with her 7 year old eldest son, Walter Duncan, with the making of the film Korridor, which joins several collections. She is also the curator of the Experiment 120 programme of experimental films for children, and of the speculative programme of Hôtel des Autrices. She lives and works in Berlin.

mariepierrebonniol.com | @mariepierrebonniol

Creative residencies and texts on the project

May 2019 – Residency at the Bel Ordinaire, Pau-Billère, France.
Residency texts (in French)

June 2019 – Residency at Dampfzentrale, Bern, Switzerland with production support budget.
Interview on A66re6at (in German)

December 2019 – Bernadette Bertin, Catherine Parmentier & Thierry Parmentier / Indre Histoire d’Île : The artist Marie-Pierre Bonniol “bewitched” by the tide mill of Indret (in French)

February 2023 – Gilles Hieronimus: Cartel of Wasser for the exhibition Bachelard contemporain, La Fab., Paris, France (in French)


Director, editing: Marie-Pierre Bonniol

Additional Images: Lauritz Baudisch, Émilie Beffara, Érik Bullot, Sue Duncan & Alan Herbert, Virginie Garnier, Fanny Hollman, Stéphanie Lux, Dagmar Morath

Music: Andreas O. Hirsch, Khaki Blazer, Raymonde, Richard Pinhas, The Dead Mauriacs.

With: Martin Aillet, Séverine Bascouert, Pierre Bastien, Evan Crankshaw, Keith Duncan, Marcus Duncan, Walter Duncan, Urður Ásta Eiríksdóttir, Julie Fossaert, Olivier Prieur

Post-production: Sergi Sanchez Rodriguez (color grading), Gábor Ripli (sound design) / VOLTE, Berlin.

Production assistants: Floriane Barreau, Keith Duncan, David Stieffenhofer

Administration: Constance Legeay, Nicolas Rotenberg


Studio Walter, Berlin, Germany

Disco-Babel, Vincennes, France

Countries of production: Germany, France, Iceland, Switzerland

© Marie-Pierre Bonniol, VG Bild-Kunst 2019-2021

Associated co-producers

Un je ne sais quoi, Tours, France

Dampfzentrale, Bern, Switzerland


VOLTE, Berlin, Germany

Full credits (PDF)


Marie-Pierre Bonniol
+49 (0) 151-212 611 08