His Master’s Voice
(Sweden, 1997, video, 3:00)
Thorén concentrates on working with existing, or ‘ready made’ film material. The simple act of appropriation changes its context and thus gives it new meaning. The Swedish film maker used a recording of a scientific experiment with a dog for this film, in which its ability to move about is affected by dosing it with alcohol or drugs. These images undoubtably have a different meaning for visitors to a festival for film and video art, than they do for a biologist. Thorén calls it “the restricting fear in our society of weakness and an excessive belief in authority.” The quandry of whether it is appropriate to laugh at these images or not, adds anoter uncomfortable and moral dilemma to the experience.