Talk To Me
Added February, 2012
Curated by Josephine Mills
Video courtesy of Vtape
Talk to Me is the inaugural set of videos for the U of L Art Gallery’s Project Channel satellite space for video. Featuring work by Canadian and international artists, all of the video works in this curated selection address identity and self-representation as well as connect to the DIY and viral possibilities of recent technology that have lead to an explosion of personal stories and images being widely available through YouTube and social media.
With the video works in Talk to Me, some explore the performative aspects of the goofy and banal antics that are posted to the internet, such as Heather Keung’s acrobatics in “Bending over Backwards” and “Upside Down – Downside Up” or Benny Nemerofsky Ramsay’s “Subtitled.” Deirdre Logue takes these small, everyday moments to a new level of absurdity in the compilation “Why Always Instead of Just Sometimes.” Alison M. Kobayashi’s brilliant “Lose Yourself” captures the play with gender and sexuality involved in re-staging a popular video, “From Alex to Alex,” based on a found love note, creates the excruciating discomfort of encountering details about other people’s lives that should be kept private.
Other works in Talk to Me are serious explorations of identity in relation to social and political concerns such as Kevin Lee Burton’s personal narrative in “Meskanahk (My Path)” about finding his way in life as a young man of both Cree and non-Aboriginal heritage. Lesley Loksi Chan’s deceptively simple “Curse Cures” and “Dear Sister” use the most basic video techniques to create powerful, poetic reflections on her family history and sense of self.
Martha Wilson’s “Selected Works by Martha Wilson,” a collection of her work from the early 1970s and Suzy Lake’s “The Natural Way to Draw” provide historical context for the contemporary works and give a sense of the kinds of imagery and techniques used to explore similar ideas when video was first developed as an art form.
Bending Over Backwards
Bending Over Backwards is part of a series of performance art videos whereby the artist submits herself to several physical endurance challenges. These challenges are reminiscient of child play and competition, and yet are more torturous than playful. Despite her will to maintain acts of balance, grace and strength, she inevitably succumbs to the body’s physical weakness.
Upside Down – Downside Up
Upside Down – Downside Up is part of a series of performance art videos whereby the artist submits herself to several physical endurance challenges. These challenges are reminiscient of child play and competition, and yet are more torturous than playful. Despite her will to maintain acts of balance, grace and strength, she inevitably succumbs to the body’s physical weakness.
Benny Nemerofsky Ramsay
I just can’t get you out of my head, boy, your lovin’ is all I think about.
Why Always Instead of Just Sometimes
Why Always Instead of Just Sometimes is a selection of 12 short works that record accomplishments without impact, small feats of moderate strength and moments of mild impudence. They are reflections on aging, breaking down and reparation. They are works that describe our need for intimacy and our fears of exposure. They are always, when we really wish they were just sometimes.
Alison S. M. Kobayashi
A silent film actor performs literal interpretations of the lyrics from the rap, Lose Yourself by Eminem.
From Alex To Alex
Alison S. M. Kobayashi
In the fall of 2003 Kobayashi found a letter on the Winston Churchill Blvd QEW overpass. It was labeled From: Alex To: Alex. This is a film based on the contents of that letter.
Kevin Lee Burton
A linguistic soundscape comprised of the deconstruction and reconstruction of Cree narration dances with various manipulated landscapes. This audio-visual experiment begs questions of how languages exist, emerge, and survive.
Lesley Loksi Chan
The arrival of a new worker to a jeans factory causes changes to the rhythms of the workplace. This mysterious narrative integrates personal and collective history with fiction.
Lesley Loksi Chan
The story of Sally and Suzie, two sisters who live very different lives. Sally is a world traveler and Suzie is a homebody. When Sally becomes stuck at home, it’s Suzie’s turn to tell her about the world.
Selected Works by Martha Wilson
Features 8 videos by groundbreaking American artist Martha Wilson: “Premiere,” “Routine Performance,” “Arts Sucks,” “Appearance as Value,” “Method Art,” “Psychology of Camera Presence,” “Cauterization,” and “Deformation.”
The Natural Way to Draw
The Natural Way to Draw is a performance taking its title from the traditional drawing textbook by Nicolaides. The performer literally draws her self-portrait upon her own face, following instructions read to her from the text. The 3 dimensional drawing on a 3 dimensional form becomes exaggerated with the representaion. The schism of the simulation to the figure becomes a mask – a device to hide behind, or to selectively reveal.
the process of making consistent
In Argentina it is not unusual to come across popular altars devoted to people who have tragically died because of accidents or social injustices. If you travel along Argentinean roads you will encounter a Gauchito Gil altar, and in the streets of Buenos Aires is an altar from Crogmagnon, among others. Constantly in flux, these altars act as ephemeral interventions into public space.
Love & Numbers
A Two Spirited woman surrounded by spy signals and psychiatric walls attempts to make sense of love, global paranoia, and her place in the history of colonialism. Spliced in between her monologues are the binary codes of all the psychiatric drugs she has taken.
Sick Fun La!
Vancouver is one of the best places in the world to eat. The Cantonese phrase “sik fan la” means “have you eaten?” or “let’s eat”. Two guys do lunch everyday and talk about things both trivial and slightly less trivial.