From: Marianna Ellenberg (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Nov 08 2006 - 07:29:45 PST
“We are So Much Better Than This” (Performing the truth/Perusing a Lie)
Video Works by Tanja Dabo, Nir Evron, Marianna Ellenberg, Oriana Fox, Valerian Freyberg, Omer Krieger, Steve Reinke and Samuel Stevens
Curated by Marianna Ellenberg
November 15, 8:00 PM, Admission: Free, Studio 27, 689 Bryant Street
San Fransisco, CA
The video works in “We are So Much Better Than This—Performing the Truth/Perusing a Lie” subvert the symbiotic relationship between the script, the voice, its owner, and potential embodiment. Hovering between abstract images and spectral bodies, the voice is never stabilized in these works, it is either edited to the wrong sync point or created from a falsified script. This screening traces the breadth and variation of the video voice, including the queering of popular Americana In Steve Reinke’s “Anthology of American Folk Song” (2004), the replaying of counter-revolutionary voices in Hayes “SLA Screed 20” (2002) and exhausting the voice of cultural tourism in Dabo’s “Wellcomme”(2004). From lipsynching to de-synchronization, these works shift the authority of the disembodied voice, re-inhabiting it with freudian slips, miscalculations, polymorphous perversity and human desire.
Omer Krieger, "FLAG" (Israel, 2 min, 2003, video ) Produced by TV CHANNEL
FLAG is a call for a post-national Israel, offering up the possibility of deterritorialization in an age of growing nationalism and religious fundamentalism. Is the removal of the Star of David liberating or oppressing, and are there only two ways to look at this possible future? (-Omer Krieger, 2006)
Marianna Ellenberg, "The Psychotrophic Alphabet From Z to Z" (US, 3 min, 2004)
Probing questions are culled from psycho-pharmaceutical websites and re-edited against the passive image of a woman endlessly drifting in a pastoral landscape. The trauma of a televisual consciousness, and the loss of a psychological self is echoed through the empty gaze of the patient, and the chilling authority of ‘neutral’ voice over.
Oriana Fox, "Consciousness, Understanding 'N Trust" video (US/UK, 6 min, 2003)
Ventriloquism, lip-synching, and appropriation all play subversive roles in the post-feminist retro-spoof, Consciousness, Understanding ‘N Trust. In it I play a quirky cast of characters including Betty Crocker brunettes, soap-opera blondes, and air-head redheads as they become aware of their collective subjugation as women.
Sharon Hayes "Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) Screed No. 20" (USA,15 min, 2004)
Hayes's talking-head re-creation of a video made by Patty Hearst and her captors after her kidnapping in 1974. She upbraids her parents for their wealth, accuses the American government of trying to kill her and declares solidarity with the revolution. (From a New York Times Review, January 2006)
Tanja Dabo "Wellcome", video (Croatia, 9 min,2004) Incessantly repeating, almost to the point of choking, the phrase welcome in foreign languages addressed to all potential tourists for whom the country and its weakened economy crave, Tanja Dabo uses choking as a metaphor for the exhausting attempts to satisfy foreign interests.
Samuel Stevens, "Esperi" video (UK, 10 min, 2005)
Esperi is a documentary style video set in the Esperanto Society headquarters of Bialystok, Poland, the birthplace of the language. The film begins in un-subtitled Esperanto but quickly slips into Polish (with English subtitles) when the language reaches its' revelatory limit. This film traces the history of Esperanto from its creation through to it’s current status within the EU parliament where it is rivaled only by English as a bridging language between nations.
Valerian Freyberg "March 18, 2003" 2004, 10 min , UK 2004
In this piece, Freyberg presents the official British governmental transcript of Tony Blair’s infamous address to Parliament, backing up his decision, to enter into war with Iraq, based on the overwhelming issue of the missing WMD’s. This transcript appears as a subtitle, along with the audio of the actual speech, hi-lighting the disconcerting gap between intention/presentation and objective historical record, which subsequently cleans out all extraneous errors and human mishaps, coughs or inconsistencies.
Nir Evron “One Forest” 6 min, 2006
One Forest was shot in the Bialowieza forest, which is the last remaining primeval forest, a unique ecological system that is 8000 years old. A site, in which mass execution of Jews and partisans took place under Hitler and the USSR was officially dispersed, the border between Poland and Belarus (the new EU eastern border) traverses this site. This forest exists at the juncture between nightmares of the past, a vision of an emmerging EU, and a limbo of a never-ending present.
BREAK & Discussion:
What is the power of the performative voice? Can it shift consciousness? What does socio-political resistance consist of in a post-global world? Can citizens reclaim their own voices in the face of growing governmental control and restrictions upon our freedoms to think write, communicate and act? How do symbols embody political meaning or resist it?
REINKE TIME: Who’s voice—where? What?
…and yet another thought from our favorite, unabashedly queer, video maverick! Language, Culture and identity is turned upside down and inside out in Reinke’s prolific body of work.
Steve Reinke,"Anthology of American Folk Song" (Canada, 29 min, 2004)
Anthology of American Folk Song retools Harry Smith's "Anthology of American Folk Music". Another twisted Reinke journey into American mythology and broken dreams, including masqueraded televangelists and ingenous reconfigurations of popular melodies from JLO to Patty Smith.
For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.