Clemens Schöll

On The Allegedly Last Piece Of Lignite, 2017

VR experience for HTC Vive

Framed as an on-site VR-lecture reflecting its own technology, this work Vom angeblich letzten Stück Kohle (English translation: On The Allegedly Last Piece Of Lignite) was specific to the "Bautechnisches Denkmal Schacht Dölitz", a now defunct lignite mine shaft in southern Leipzig. The site was 3D-scanned and 3D-modelled. In VR we see a reproduction of what immediately surrounds us: the old installations, initially constructed in the 1890s, the modifications done in the 1920s, 1960s, the demolitions of the 1970s.

First lignite mine shaft, then conversion in the GDR, then dilapidation. What historical authenticity can such virtual experiences develop in the auratic context of a real system? Is the logic of representation limited by the medium? How do different representations — rough 3D scans, clean 3D models, a talk, poetry — as different kinds of prosthetic knowledge alter our acceptance of its history, as a heritage, and its existence as a "memory"? A polemic, drawing on Jorge Luis Borges' 1947 short story El Inmortal (The Immortal).



Camera and 3D scan boom: Julie Hart

Sound: Leon Naffin

3D model template: Bernd Mörsberger

3D scan software: BundleFusion

Thanks to: Leon Naffin, Ortrun Bargholz


This work was developed as part of the THIS IS FAKE exhibition at Schacht Dölitz (former underground mine for brown coal) in Leipzig in 2017. Four site specific VR experiences were displayed in the loading bay of a shut down coal mine which is now being transformed into a place for art and cultural projects by its owners.

All pieces of the exhibition:

Yannick Harter, Fragments of a Hologram Rose, 2017

Fabian Lehmann & Filip Krause, Steiger, 2017   

Clemens Schöll, On The Allegedly Last Piece Of Lignite, 2017

Clemens Schöll, Questions To Self-Perception, 2017




Clemens Schöll questions the current relationship between technology and society. His work implies different formats of video, performance, net art and (virtual reality) installations. By aestheticizing complex phenomena inherent to a technological status quo or development, he generates new approaches to presumably inaccessible areas.


Schöll (b. 1994) is currently studying media art at the HGB Leipzig. Prior to that, he attended various art courses at the UdK Berlin and the FBAUL in Lisbon. He also holds a degree in computer science from the TU Berlin.

He has recently participated in shows at New Budapest Gallery, HGB Galerie Leipzig, and Kunstpunkt Berlin, among others. He lives and works in Leipzig and Berlin and is part of the media art collective THIS IS FAKE.

If you are interested in exhibiting or viewing this artistic VR experience, please send an email to us.