introduces into the exhibition space three artist’s methodologies which analyze issues of autobiography, recollection and the restructuring of the relation between image and voice.
As the title suggests, the concept emphasizes the notion of identity as being shaped by a specific experience inside of a cultural framework, which in order to be accessed requires a specific method, the use of a password, a voice.
Thereby the concept alludes to the structure of identity as something that is neither self evident, nor a static and given condition. A password is needed in order to gain access to a world formatted by media, that on the one hand is based on purely visual materials, and on the other on a voice that recounts, describes, and eventually falls silent.
The project considers these works through the media as artifact, not as fact, and allows for views of the mechanics of media set in relation to the structuring of memory, reminiscence and awareness precisely in regards of the role of the spoken word. The visual footage privileges an individual’s biographical insight contained within the spoken narrative. Thus, within the range of an always very specific time, identity is described as a system which is composed by the agency of media artifacts.
Anri Sala is represented through his film Intervistafrom 1998, as well as Silent Duel, a new project that entails the idea of a ‘video kiosk’ produced as a correspondence to the haus.0 philosophy of the media plug-ins. In Silent DuelSala draws from memories of films as if those were his own, which in fact, they have become. His approach towards the idea of autobiography is based on the organizing principle of a media format as a collection of film footage.
So the access to memory is defined by the specific media, as well as the visual cores of the media become memories, an exchange process that in Frampton’s work is, being articulated by voices accompanying the passages as photographs burn up as if to release their narrative on a film. In this process also the relation of voice and image is at stake since what is described never matches that what is seen in the frame of the photo. The voice thus not only comments but structures the image.
In Reminiscences of a Journey to LithuaniaMekas tells about the impossibility of really returning to a place from which one has been exiled, and his attempt of reconstructing a past that he only remembers. He collects together pieces of a world that has been almost accidentally framed by his camera, in an attempt of speaking of the past while at the same time reinventing it. Small film diary entries, shifting contexts and timelines, past and present are contained in the frame of an image. One moves from an individual perspective that turns out to be constructed as well to a system that uses footage of films like foot notes, like passwords conjuring up new tales. If it was possible to collect and record one’s dreams, maybe the collection of Sala’s video kiosk would be close to an anticipation of such an endeavour, that found its very origins precisely in the mundane format of consumer vhs.