Bad Anima, 2012

Projection, Vidéo HD, couleur, son. 2012.

2’50’’ boucle continue

A l’horizon d’un paysage silencieux, une étendue d’eau miroitante et calme bruit lentement du dessous. De la surface lisse de cette eau dormante émerge graduellement une créature énigmatique, une chevelure qui semble étirer son noir à l’infini dans le pli de l’onde. L’irruption de cette masse sombre érectile vient fendre le miroir d’eau et troubler l’étain de la surface y inscrivant la trace d’un étrange anneau.

Apparition fantomale, la masse fuligineuse s’élève et lévite au-dessus de l’eau et se maintient mystérieusement suspendue dans les airs, tournoyant et ruisselant abondement en cascade fibreuse. Corps improbable, fontaine échevelée d’où se déverse l’eau des rêves et des mythes, telle une Néréide à la chevelure d’encre, elle étire puis résorbe son noir à la pliure de l’onde claire. L’oblong crevant le lustre du lac retourne dans les profondeurs, sa demeure, et rejoint le silence des confins, son origine mystérieuse.

Empruntant son titre à l’archétype jungien de l’Anima, la vidéo met en scène la figure universelle, légendaire, mythologique, merveilleuse de la Sirène, qu’elle soit Ondine, Néréide, Naïade, etc… De la nymphe aquatique à la Vénus anadyomène (« que les hommes appellent Aphrodite pour s’être formée d’une écume » Hésiode, Théogonie), elle possède un fort pouvoir d’évocation, d’incantations magiques, et appelle récits de voyages, créatures cauchemardesques ou enchanteresses.

« L’eau s’alourdit, s’enténèbre, s’approfondit, elle se matérialise. »

Gaston Bachelard, L’eau et les rêves

Out of the Whale (day), 2008

Eternal Video. (Real time evolving permanent video), HD plasma screen, computer. color, silent.

Extension in Real time of the founding principle of « permanent videos», Out Of The Whale symptomatically revisits the first Permanent Video made: Fountain, 1994.

Out of the Whale (night), 2008

Eternal Video. (Real time evolving permanent video), HD plasma screen, computer. color, silent.

Extension in Real time of the founding principle of « permanent videos», Out Of The Whale symptomatically revisits the first Permanent Video made: Fountain, 1994.

Doves 1936, 2007

Black and white video, silent.

In this ten seconds video, doves from Snow White are composited onto a scene from the movie Olympia, showing the release of doves at the opening ceremony of 1936 Berlin Olympics. Both movies are contemporary (1936), and had interwoven destinies. Riefensthal and Disney were very respectful of each other’s work, and Hitler a devout fan of Mickey.

Speaking in tongues, 2007

Permanent video (computer programming), black and white, silent.

Producing a seemingly incomprehensible series of words, Speakingintongues is a succession of military code names from the war in Irak. The program incorporates the 468 code names of coalition military operations in Irak from March 2003 to August 2007. The program randomly accesses code names and generates a “matrix”-like transition between them.

Postpartum, 2006

Permanent video, flat screen or projection, black & white, silent.

The video Excroissance (Post-Partum II) presents a seemingly endless succession of morphing shapes. The black shapes are in fact the negative space between a mother and a child, as featured on the packaging of common supermarket products. The video features over a hundred different products (a H.U.M.A.N.W.O.R.L.D. project).

Ghost (holy), 2006

Permanent vidéo for projection, color, silent (CG).

Voile de Véronique sans image, cette toile-écran fantomatique (double référence à la peinture et au cinéma) se situe à l'interface du motif et du support. La vidéo évoque par ailleurs l'image populaire du fantôme (sous son drap blanc) et en a - tel un linceul - les proportions (celles d'un corps). Cependant, animée de façon surnaturelle, l'étoffe n'habille plus ici une présence désincarnée mais incarne bien, de par sa matière et son mouvement, une présence.

We Are the Children - part 2, 2004

Permanent video, color, silent.

The video We Are the Children presents a seemingly endless succession of « portrait-products », that is to say, supermarket products the packaging of which features a realistic representation of a human being. Coming from all over the world, this international community (which constitutes H.U.M.A.N.W..O.R.L.D.) is shown here in a continuous, seamless, dual morph : both the faces on the packages and the geometry of the respective packages are simultaneously morphed into each other. Part 2 exclusively features pairs : from heterosexual couples to mothers (or fathers) and children, from babies and stuffed animals to kids, from friends or siblings of all ages to people with pets.

Devoted, 2004

Permanent video, color, silent. Flat screen TV or projection

25’ non repeating.

The video presents a series of slogans, all taken from existing sources (bumper stickers, baseball caps, mugs etc). They are edited to highlight a certain logic between religion, patriotism, militarism and morality in the USA.

Transcendental Abstraction (Trust in me), 2003

Interactive Permanent video (DVD).

Video, Color, silent, professional DVD player, ultrasound detection cell, monitor on pedestal.

We Are the Children - Part 1, 2003

Permanent video, color, silent, monitor on pedestal.

The video We Are the Children presents a seemingly endless succession of « portrait-products », that is to say, supermarket products the packaging of which features a realistic representation of a human being. Coming from all over the world, this international community (which constitutes H.U.M.A.N.W..O.R.L.D.) is shown here in a continuous, seamless, dual morph : both the faces on the packages and the geometry of the respective packages are simultaneously morphed into each other.

Burning Bush, 2003

Permanent video, monitor on the floor.

CG, color, silent.

(1 min extract)

Object, 2002

Permanent video. Monitor on pedestal. CG, color, silent.

The monitor and pedestal form a single object. The monitor shows a computer graphics “object” placed on a slowly rotating base, in a constant state of flux. It appears ex nihilo and evolves continually, changing both its shape and substance. Transparent to start with, it becomes marble, milk, blood, stone, perfect sphere etc. It turns tirelessly on its own axis in the space of the monitor, like a commodity presented in a shop window. Arousing fascination, this “object” plays on the twofold register of a transitory nature and an amnesic permanence. Being indescribable, it catches the eye. There is nothing real about it and yet all potentials are in it; it is a perpetual motion, inscribed in the time frame of a permanent video.

Phoenix, 2000

Permanent video (DVD). Monitor on pedestal. Black and white, silent.

The video is based on an excerpt from a Nazi propaganda film showing a Hitler Youth torchlight meeting. It shows the dramatically lit, close-up faces of several young men standing to attention, facing the viewer. In the background, one can make out the flickering motion of a flame and the smoke rising from it. The scene is perfectly looped, strengthening the image of the eternal torch.

Shown on a pedestal so the faces are roughly at the same height as a standing adult, the video has the disquieting presence of a sentry.

Withering II, 1998

Permanent video (DVD). Monitor on small pedestal. Color, silent.

The video features the packaging of Pears’ Soap, which shows a photographic representation of a child. It is a tradition for this English brand to replace the face of the little girl on its product annually, chosing her from photographs sent in by customers. In this video, Miss Pears 1996 was filmed in real time and superimposed back onto the original packaging. In the resulting video, the child model attempts to hold the original pose and smile. The video is slowed down by half and the various movements are stretched over time (eye movements, blinking, yawning etc.). This silent gaze creates a permanent, animated presence. Presented on a small monitor placed on a small base, the piece has the same height as the actual little girl.

Withering is a H.U.M.A.N.W.O.R.L.D. project.

Withering I, 1998

Permanent video (DVD). Monitor on pedestal. Color, sound.

with Daniela Attansio

The video features an Italian yogurt dating from 1991 on the packaging of which is a photographic representation of a woman. A fungus growth is visible on the top left corner of the packaging and the resulting stain covers in part the model's portrait, defacing it slightly. Every twenty minutes, the face on the packaging speaks for approximately ten minutes. The model talks, in Italian, about her childhood, her private life and the relationship she entertains with her own reflected and photographed image. The biographical dimension and the time-span of the narrative contrast both with the organic time frame of the perishable contents and the cyclical one of the manufactured commodity (produced, bought, consumed, destroyed). Presented on a monitor placed on a base, the piece has the same height as the actual model.

This work was presented as part of the exhibitions Withering (Quebec, 1998) and Still Withering (Paris, 1999) which comprised the following three elements (a man, a woman, a child):

Untitled (Janus)

Withering II

Minding, 1994

Video shown on a monitor set on a pedestal. The animated character walks an endless circle whilst continuously staring at the viewer. The circular movement it describes in space mirrors the temporal video loop of which it is a product. The fixed stare, associated with a pendulum-like movement conjures up a fascination akin to hypnosis.

The perpetual reiteration of the action does away with any temporal element: of the thousands of steps the owl is condemned to take there remains no trace; no erosion of the depicted ground.

Fountain, 1994

Permanent video (DVD). Monitor on the floor. Color, sound.

Video shown on a monitor on the floor, in a corner of the room. The central figure is “de-animated” (inanimate), while the water surrounding it flows continuously. A perfect loop simulates the movement of the water and a linear sound recording (noise of flowing water) accompanies the image. The schematic drawing (simple shapes, bright colors), combined with the homogeneous and regular sound of the water flowing softens the morbid character of the subject: a drowning. The inscription of the image and the sound within a protracted time frame, with neither beginning nor end, hampers our understanding of the event and reduces the narrative dimension of the scene. The positive symbolism of the fountain (life, eternal youth) combined with an evocation of death, lends the image dynamic tension.