Artist Research

Recently, I feel as though I have hit a brick wall on this unit. I know I have aspects of my idea which I need to develop and improve, but where I find the inspiration for this is a myth to me. However many times I search on Google ‘Video artists who focus on body image/self confidence/ self esteem”, it seems to be only the Dove campaign that appears (where a forensic scientist draws the same person described by two people).

However, one video artist that I did come across coincidentally was Lisa Steele. She is a Canadian video artist who works alone but also collaborates with Venice Biennale. Her piece here ” Birthday Suit with Scars and Defects” not only focuses on identity, but what makes each person individual.

http://www.steeleandtomczak.com/video/birthdaysuit.html

“On the occasion of my 27th birthday I decided to do a tape that chronicled my passage through time. I have always been clumsy, tripping, dropping, falling with alarming regularity. This tape accepts the extent of the consequences.” L.S.

This shows how her traits and personality of being clumsy have affected her physically through scarring. Using this method that she does of showing each scar she is talking about is effective but only because it’s aiding the audience a lot with attaching what they’re seeing with what they’re hearing- but maybe a little too much for my liking.

I think this could have been done a lot more artistically, thinking about lighting and camera angles to make the audience think slightly about the scar she is talking about- either that or light each scar so well that we can see a real in depth detail of it, which can be matched with her vocals.

This is an idea that I may consider from watching this video art. I still like the fact of the subjects being anonymous in some way, so maybe a next avenue to look at would be to ask them to answer the question, and film a relevant part of their body depending on this. Although, this would be assuming that they will talk physical things they don’t like about themselves and maybe this is because this work is coming from a females point of view, and I get the impression that most women have physical insecurities over their traits and personalities, so the assumption is that it is the same for males. However, this is something that my video art will hope to prove.

Another source that I came across and appreciated the style of is this photograph below.

Body Parts - Third - Garnet Clews

I have more recently become more interested in the effect and mood that lighting can give to a scene, and I appreciate it more when used in abstract form. For example, in this photo by Garnet Clews, I like how there are bars of shadow across feet. This gives you the feeling of entrapment, and is something that could work strongly alongside my idea for my video art piece. Thinking of the possibility of filming body parts abstractly that the subject is telling the audience, adding a lighting effect such as this may make the subject seem as though their insecurities are stuck within their body and they need to break through the barriers. This would work especially well when using males as subjects, as they are the sex known to not talk about their inhibitions as much as woman.

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