Narrative Screenings 1

•February 25, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Mona Hatoum “Measures of Distance”: This was a rather lengthy, narrative about daughter receiving letters from her mother and reading them monotonously, slowly, and weakly.  The narrator’s voice is very sad and reminiscent and the audience immediately feels her pain and sympathizes with her.  Throughout the letters, she talks about being displace, taken away from home, things changing, violence, sexuality, stories from the past, a particular even where they took pictures of each other posing in the shower and their father getting upset with them and feeling left out, etc.  The transitions between photos were very soothing and constant, almost like waves that just kept coming.  Because the light was so dark: background noise signified that everything just keeps going on and the person reading was taken to another world by reading.  Talked about being displaced, taken away from home, things changing,  not a lot of motion justMeasures from A Distance still images moving around the screen, lots of use of darkness and black and lack of image that made you concentrate; mother was sending letters to Mona who was reading, narrative, used slow dimming to create monotony, reminiscence, sadness, longing, almost like tired eyes blinking and drooping,

Ryan Trecartin “Tommy Chat Just Emailed Me”: This was extremely different from the previous screening, using super intense vivid imagery and colors and florescent lighting. Characters had extreme amounts of makeup, the audio was very sporadic and seemed to exhibit more of a thought process/conversation than a story telling like Mona’s did.  The characters involved Ryan acting as a Jewish librarian, Pam with the baby living in the hotel, and Tommy at the lakehouse in the woods.  This piece addressed lots of gender roles and identity issues and sexuality.  I played with different modes of communications, self absorbed characters concerned with themselves and the ones they love, very jumpy and confusing visual effects, and use of speeding up voice and screams.  Many of these effects intensified the audience’s reaction and interpretation of the meaning intended by Trecartin.  Humor was also consistently present.Tommy Chat Just Emailed Me


Pipilotti Rist

•February 23, 2009 • Leave a Comment

All three of the screenings we watched in class were incredibly different, but still managed to incorporate some of the same concepts and techniques.  Her multichannel use of two cornering walls adds a 3D effect to the display and the audience feels more involved with the exhibition because of the camera angles and projection angles.  Her works had very vivid imagery and color.  The video of the woman carrying the flower orange and yellow flower and smashing the car windows was one of my favorite films that we have watched this semester.  It had a sort of dainty/soothing feel because of the tempo at which she walked and the quietness.  I also liked the vivid color of the flower/object that she was holding.  The contrast between nature and machine/development/city was very apparent.  It was very out of the box conceptually.  Speaking of out of the box, the first piece we watched was nothing short of chaotic.  The aggressive camera angles and close up zooms and motions of the cameras about the woman’s body present a new perspective and interpretation of the female body.  The crazy music was kind of trippy and the blood made my stomach weak.  I am the kind of person who shuts her eyes at the scary parts in horror movies, so watching this piece was excruciating for me because I, personally, was disgusted with the content.  However, I think it was a great work and Rist clearly exhibits brilliance through her work.  i loved both the visual and audial rhythm in the Sip My Ocean piece.  I think the whole class liked hearing a familiar song, and it was interesting to see how incorporating something we were familiar with completely changed our perception of the piece as a whole.  In all, the Sip My Ocean piece had a very calming and soothing effect on its audience.  It made me feel like I was snorkeling or watching one of those cheesy resort commercials that i love.

Bill Viola “Anthem”

•February 18, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This piece used repetition, rhythm, timing, and vivid imagery/content to evoke a passionate and heavy interpretation of life and death.  I felt like the rhythm was broken up by the piece with the girl in the white dress.  Because she was so still, it almost came across like an image…but her little movements made it clear that the piece had added a dimension of time as well.  The scenes with the bodily organs and open surgeries was very intense.  The use of transitions and rhythm created both a feeling of suspense as well as helplessness.  As a viewer, I feel like I could watch this piece several times and learn more and more from it each time.

Margaret Morse “Video Installation Art: The Body, the Image and the Space in Between”

•February 16, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This reading introduces us to video installation, one of the most complex art forms in contemporary culture.  This type of art, like all others, involves the critical components of space and time to evoke emotion and create meaning.  “Installation” suggests that the artist creates the setting in a designated space that is used only temporarily, unlike 2 dimensional art that is created on a canvas or paper and can be easily displaceable.  Video installation requires a process in which the action of a subject depicts the “space-in-between,” or the passage of an object through space and time, that 2-dimensional art lacks.  Each installation is an experiment to recreate and project the imagination onto the world through a reformulation of visual and kinesthetic experience.  The audience participates in art and video installation encourages reflection through the body.  There are two types of video installation: Closed-circuit video and recorded-video.  The reading describes how television changes the way art is viewed and how if the television apparatus were a video art installation, the awareness of space would be a bigger part of the experience.  The content of images is deemphasized whil the properties such as line, color, and vectors of motion are highlighted.  The “You had to be there” concept was super interesting.  “Much remains to be explored and revealed in the art of experience.”  Because this reading was so complex, wikipedia spells it out nicely:  Video installation is a contemporary art method that combines video technology with installation art. It is an art form that utilizes all aspects of its surrounding environment as a vehicle of affecting the audience

First Animation Project

•February 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Diane Nerwen: Spank

•February 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This piece manipulates time to create a whole new situation with a whole new meaning our of an old movie.  Because time goes backwards and is repeated, the characters’ emotions and reflexes seem to portray different moods and actions.  Although it is very clear to the viewer that these clips are being rewound and repeated, the viewer tries to find meaning in the piece and does not have to look very hard, it comes easily.  Suspense builds as the actions get closer and closer to spanking the baby, and the spank is a very brief and exaggerated thrill.

Luigi Russolo “The Art of Noises”

•February 4, 2009 • Leave a Comment

This reading was my favorite yet!  Russolo describes the differences between sound, music, and noise.  He argues that humans are slowly training themselves to hear more and to distinguish between different sounds.  Today’s music has become noise because it is so complex and involves the sounds produced by machines.  He believes that humans should continue their quest to increase the variety of sounds to infinite quantities.  He believes that, to humans, sound fills/prevents boredom, and that new sounds evoke new emotions.  One of the most intriguing points I took from this reading was Russolo’s remark that, “nature is naturally silent.”  This is so true and I have never thought about it!  When noise is organized, played with, and assembled with other noises, each noise begins to “lose its imitative quality and becomes an abstract element of art.”