Coincidence or Causality?
(according to Immanuel Kant)
Named Wolf then,
Destiny and self-determination
The coincidence came about in Bavaria in 1955 thanks to his mother, Baroness Elisabeth von Holzschuher, and her husband, Hubert Gaudlitz. A demanding classical education in Bamberg (‘Franconian Rome’) and at Castle Gaibach in Lower Franconia, and in the regional capital, Munich. Studies, Drama School, protégé (Meisterschüler) of Helge Peters-Pawlinin from 1976-79. Raised for the greater part, however, beneath orange and lemon trees and under the wing of the last Gattopardo, Gioacchino, Prince Lanza Tomasi di Lampedusa, in Palermo, the cultural, cult and capital city of Sicily.
Mid-twenties graduated from the school of life with an on-going commitment never to relinquish freedom of the imagination, spirit or intellect – a freedom nourished by a richly diverse life even back then.
(Photo: transporting the set for the feature film Blue Desert, Ténéré, 1991)
Wolf Georg Wilhelm Gaudlitz, author, filmmaker and producer, distributor, photographer, actor and mime artist, international print and broadcast journalist, sees himself, because of his continual expeditions, as a ‘travelling salesman in cultural matters’. Forever on the move between the Inuit in Greenland, the Tuareg in the Sahara, the Indians of the North (Sami), the indigenous ethnic groups of the Nama, Dama and Himba in southwest Africa and the Mongolian nomads in the Altai. There, this sea adventurer, who set sail on the legendary Sea Cloud, this balloonist (with Willi Eimers) and long-distance runner, gathers stories and even dreams from people who greet strangers with a smile and an open mind.
(Photo: not yet stranded, Ténéré, Niger, 1990)
After training to be an actor at the Otto Falckenberg-Schule (Munich) worked with Wolfgang Petersen (The Consequence, 1977), Federico Fellini (And the Ship Sails On, 1982) and Michael Verhoeven (1979, 1985). He assisted the award-winning Korean film director Im Kwon-Taek on two films and was also the first European filmmaker to be apprenticed to a Korean master filmmaker (1991). He was initiated into the high art of mime by Marcel Marceau and introduced to minimalism by Charlie Rivel in his desire to be a circus artist. All the while mindful of the great Spanish circus acrobat’s exhortation: “Il faut travailler et travailler, toujours travailler!” (“You have to work and work, always work!”)
In 1981 Wolf and Sandro Dieli set up a clown and mime school in Palermo .
(Photo: in mime in Leopoldstrasse, Munich, 1978)
In 1983 Wolf Gaudlitz began making his own films. To date, in addition to 21 short films, he has made eight full-length features and documentaries, all imbued with a deep sense of poetry. Taxi Lisboa (1996) became well known, and even before it enjoyed international success had been purchased by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) as a work of art. In 2016 it was recognized as a piece of ‘German film heritage’ and digitized.
(Photo: The almost immortal taxi driver Augusto Macedo, 1995)
…and story gatherer
Well known too is the mosaic-like tale Palermo Whispers (2001) about the eponymous city.
One of the main actors was Leoluca Orlando, who became internationally famous, not only as an outstanding mayor of Palermo. Back in 1993, just after the horrific assassinations of the prosecuting magistrates Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, Wolf made the award-winning film of Leoluca Orlando, Gezählte Tage / Their Days are Numbered
(Photo: Leoluca Orlando as the city hall’s clockmaker in the film Palermo Whispers)
Sahara Salaam & peace to everyone
Sahara Salaam – On the Axis of a Smile (2014) gave Wolf 12 years of work, but also hope and love and at the same time a whole slew of adventures. With this film, he brought his Travel Trilogy to a conclusion and also fulfilled a long-held principle: to be able to wait for and expect changes in the way things look.
The final sentence on the screen in the film Sahara Salaam is a testament to this principle: after 112 minutes of film, against the emerging red and purple hues of the evening light the following words appear: “Patience is the time that gives you friends.”
(Photo: Ladda, 2003, and in 2013 a movie star)
With this understanding of patience, in 2016 he produced and shot a deeply touching story with the painter Milan Mihajlović after decades of friendship with the Bosnian artist. The (20 -minute) film is full of Felliniesque shades and is called Sjecam se – Amarcord (I remember)
(Photo: to touch, to love, to remember, 2016)
In full motion
Since 1999 Wolf Gaudlitz has spent time living and travelling in a customised 12 ton, off-road truck equipped with an open air cinema. He calls the vehicle ‘cinemamobile’, pronouncing it the Italian way. Moving and movies on the one hand, enriching encounters on the other. It follows then that Wolf Gaudlitz lives in a ‘movimento continuo’ and seeks to live life following the principle of constant give and take. This constant motion is punctuated by working the land: carrying out the winegrower’s tasks with passion, closely connected to the Sicilian soil.
(Photo: blithely swallowing SAHARA-dust again and again, since 1980)
Maybe it’s because…
…the artist’s consciousness harbours the self-imposed life motto of permanent and desired failure: “Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” (Samuel Beckett) or “You don’t have a chance, but use it!”(Herbert Achternbusch)
(Photo: solofilm, part of the film team moving on to the next location in Sicily’s capital Palermo, 1999)
Home sweet home
Wolf is at home in more languages and cultures than the number of his (from a bourgeois, moral stance) failed marriages. The result of these relationships are healthy and vivacious children who are not only a huge joy to him and a great inspiration, but also a source of wonder. And more precious to him than any honour or award – which, as an artist, he neither expects nor courts.
(Photo: ‘At home’ wherever strangers welcome strangers)
Since his youth, spiritual excursions have helped him to hold on to collected experiences, which can be expressed thus: the present, unless imbued with love, affords little more pleasure than a sporting attempt to constantly chase after the wind.
(Photo: extensive desert pasture for wolves and others – even humans – under a far-reaching, orderly-looking, Algerian shepherd sky, 2004)
By the way,
this final image into the future shows the bumpy path
leading to the self-proclaimed hermit-poet
in the Uckermark region.
This almost unattainable one, nearly got away.
His name is Botho Strauß.