Taking Positions (2018)
3 channel HD video installation | 16:15
3 channel synchronized HD videos, three display monitors, three mobile display structures on castors, roller blind and window vinyl
Taking Positions presents a set of three performance-based video sculptures. The work draws together and investigates a potent combination of conceptual and aesthetic threads around figuration and abstraction; sculpture, the female body, and performance.
Taking Positions was filmed at Kunsthaus Dahlem, Berlin, formerly the atelier of Arno Breker—an official state sculptor of the Third Reich. In the lead-up to Kunsthaus Dahlem’s inauguration as a new exhibition venue, six female performers were filmed in the space as they embodied the postures of six of Breker’s sculptures. The statues chosen represent idealised femininity through such mythological figures as Eos, Psyche and Humility. Abstract color animations are combined with footage of the female performers. Influenced by Joseph Albers’ book Interaction of Color (1963), the animations provide a counter position to the issues figuration raised. Three short films are presented on specially designed display structures, embedding moving image in a sculptural mise-en-scène. By staging an interplay between various characteristics of classicism, modernity, and abstraction, this new work formulates relationships between systems of visual thinking, regimes of representation, and performance as a form of activation.
- Performers: Carolina Hellsgård, Katie Lee Dunbar, Lisa S. Carneiro, Mia Sellmann, Cristina Nyffeler
- Choreographer: Emma Waltraud Howes
- Camera: Daniel Sippel
- Camera assistant: Michael Freudenthaler
- Post production assistance: Emily Drossner
- Sound: Sam Botstein
- With thanks to Neue Berliner Räume and to Dorothea Schöne, Artist Director of Kunsthaus Dahlem, for their support of this project.