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My Aunt Superstar

Igor Sevcuk (NL 2002. 2:14 mins)
Sevcuk depicts his aunt’s mundane life through the lens of a superstar persona. The visual adult life, partaking in various activities. It is noted that these pictures were taken by his aunt’s husband. Sevcuk juxtaposes the concept of a superstar onto his aunt’s ordinary life to explore ideas on stardom and the manner in which stories are told through pictures. The label of superstar makes the viewer look for special features, extraordinary actions, life changing events or traumas the protagonist might have gone through. In contrast, all we see is village life, family parties, holidays, awkward poses, shy looks and a loving smile into the camera. By imposing such a defining and strong label onto a person that is essentially unknown, Sevcuk questions how stories are constructed in the media and the meaning that is attributed to pictures with techniques such as close-up and framing. Sevcuk takes the concept of a superstar and labels his aunt with this status. He depicts her life through her own old photographs. We see a mix of her childhood pictures, her teenage years and her adult life in which the pictures are mostly taken by her husband. The title of superstar makes the viewer look for special features, extraordinary actions, life changing events or trauma’s that the protagonist heroically overcame. But all we see is village life, parties, holidays, awkward poses, shy looks or a loving smile into the camera. By posing such a strong label onto a person that is unknown to the viewer, Sevcuk questions how fiction and media influence our notion of heroism in daily life.
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