Phantom Avantgarde 3 November 2011

Phantom Avantgarde by Mark Aerial Waller02_P2011-0189

Mark Aerial Waller, UK, 2010, video, 8:20 min

Phantom Avantgarde is made up of collage elements, photocopied and enlarged to life-sized scale from a selection of key films of the cinema of existentialism, as well as images of Parisian intellectuals of the mid 1960’s. Once removed from their historical cultural reference, Waller reconfigures the cut out figures as a parade of mummified bodies, narrated through subtitled text from Louis-Ferdinand Céline’s novel, Journey to the End of the Night.Phantom Avantgarde is a development of Mark Aerial Waller’s ongoing interest in the historical positioning of culture; that mythologised archival data can coexist between the reconfigured present and its original home. The figures on parade are not purely reference points to their origins of creation, but become charged receptacles of culture, living again in a parallel situation, curated and directed in a new constellation.By bringing the figures back into a three dimensional, material studio, the artist gives the frozen frames a second chance of performance. Using handheld camera movements to navigate their environment and the exact film stock of the original movies (Eastman 7222), Waller re-potentialises the characters, who seem somewhat curious of each other in their new awakening.As the film develops, the studio is put under armed siege from the bullets of Marcel Carné’s film that intercuts with the work, where broken glass and bullet riddled mirrors fracture and reflect [in a manner reminiscent of the libidinal paintings of Jacques Monory]. These already dead cut-outs are put in danger once again, prompting them to be elevated further into life.

This item is part of

Panorama #1: Rediscovering the Cinematic

Other items in this program