The Dynamite Show (2004)

Video installation for 1 projector
8.12 min. (loop)
PAL – color – stereo
Specifications: The sound should be so loud that the walls start to tremble.

Sound-editing-realisation-production: Koen Theys

collection Middelheim Museum, Antwerp (B)

Similarly to most of Koen Theys’ work, The Dynamite Show also shows a fascination with contemporary iconography. This video was built from video images of various explosions, developed by several American companies, who specialise in special effects for Hollywood films. Over a period of 8 minutes close to 200 different explosions are brought together, which results in a psychedelic panorama of shimmering explosions and seething eruptions of colour and form. In slow motion it’s as if these all-consuming eruptions do herald new signs of life; not a battlefield, but a courtship display of tiny organisms and illusive atmospheres, trying to escape from the screen at full force. At the same time the overwhelming sound wave, a layered composition based on professional effects and material of his own, is experienced as an eruption and an energy source, both terrifyingly desperate and unworldly fascinating.

…The video "The Dynamite Show" is a treasure-trove assemblage of ready-made material. The film is simultaneously realistic and artificial, capable of stirring the viewer's deepest fibres without imposing an unambiguous interpretation…”
Luk Lambrecht – De Morgen

entire article (EN) (FR) (NL)

“… The highlight of this exhibition is the video "The Dynamite Show." In the back room the visitor is confronted with an overwhelming wall of sound that conjures up ideas of war, fireworks or a violent thunderstorm - all at once. The film is simultaneously realistic and artificial, capable of stirring the viewer's deepest fibers without imposing any particular interpretation. Theys knows how to escape the gratuitous aspect of contemporary video art with work in which the intelligent editing of pre-existing pictures produces a realistic, terrifying and even 'delusional' visual language.”

Luk Lambrecht – catalogue Contemporary Art in Belgium 2006
entire article
(EN) (FR) (NL)

“… In The Dynamite Show (2004) by Koen Theys, an eight-minute orgy of spectacular explosions, the tension between a charged image motif and an abstracting montage / composition is taken to the extreme. …”
Johan Pas – Catalogue Middelheimmuseum - collection

entire article (NL) (EN)

“… The Dynamite Show transcends the earthly and brings one into a certain cosmic experience…”
Anne-Marie Poels – 600 years Belgian Art – 500 chefs-d’oeuvre de l’Art Belge

entire article (NL) (FR)

Installation view