Bertolt Brecht was not a man of compromise. Sure, he looks like the harmless little fella that runs your local newsagent but his vision single-handledly changed the face of theatre in Europe. Yes, it is that simple. Developing a combined theoretical and practical approach to epic theatre as well as his fundamental belief that the stage was a forum for political idea, we can suppose that it was circumstance that led him to Hollywood in the 1940s.
Every writer and director of note (and a great many not) has had their unsuccessful LA period and Brecht's is interpreted by artists Anja Kirschner and David Panos in their newest film The Empty Plan.
Funded as part of the FLAMIN Productions scheme to develop new and innovative works, The Empty Plan - the artists' first feature-length production - shows a Brecht ending up in California during the heyday of the Hollywood studio system while fleeing German fascism, frantically despairing against the culture he then comes up against in the US.
Subtly shifting the international focus from the stage to the silver screen, The Empty Plan juxtaposes a typically Brechtian approach to epic drama against the backdrop of Hollywood excess. Using theatrical performance and reconstruction, Kirschner and Panos have taken their successes of the past few years and come up with something as unique as Brecht himself.
The Empty Plan is on show at Focal Point Gallery, Southend-on-Sea between 22 November - 4 January, 2011 before taking a place at the British Art Show 7 when it transfers to London's Hayward Gallery, London, 16 February - 17 April, 2011.