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Installation article

The earliest form of installation art would be the magic lantern which was
developed in the 17th century and projected images onto a plain screen.
This developed into the first public film screening in 1895 by the Lumiere
Brothers where they displayed ten short films in a cinema.
Video installation is where video technology is combined with exhibitions of art.
They are usually art videos that are installed in a way that relates to the video
and makes it interactive for the audience. An example could be a video displayed
in a gallery on different screens on TVs because it would relate to the video
being played. I will be exploring more examples of installation work.
A narrative video is one that tells a story which is what drives the film and is
more common in popular cinema. Whereas a non-narrative form wouldnt tell a
story with the art shown, it is found in lots of independent films, poetic, abstract,
surrealist, more experimental films and film art.

Dance the world

'' The duality between violence and eroticism remains a


recurring theme, present in a large majority of his works,
whether sculptures videos or even paintings.
''Beauty is not a hazard'' Nietzsche (Issue of '' Tribute to
Lotte Jacobi '' 1991)
"Video is more intimate than the cinema. It looks at things, the skin. The video is
sensitive. Machines become sensitive objects. Quote by Marie-Jo Lafontaine
These quotes describe the work of Marie-Jo Lafontaine. I was interested in MarieJo Lafontaines Dance the World exhibition. The artist generally explores the
effect of using space in her exhibits. For example with Dance the world, she
created different layers of screens showing her video which gives it more
dimension and therefore makes you feel as though you are watching a live
performance of tango, the flamenco and oriental dance. The dramatic close-up
angle makes it look very dramatic and highlights the passion and desire of the
women and embellishes their sexuality which works well with the low, soft
lighting. In addition to the way their clothes glisten in this light in close-up shots
of them spinning which makes it look more abstract and creates lots of
movement. Particularly the close-ups of their bodies, such as their legs
symbolises the human body in a sensual way. The way the video starts in black
and white makes it look timeless and like it could be very old or very new, then it
fades into colour and the vibrant reds from their dresses creates a lively
atmosphere to the video. Lafontaine uses a projector to display her images on
the screen and I think she uses multiple screens to create the feeling of the
immenseness of the video. The different screens intensifies the quick shots,
making it seem quicker because all screens are moving and it makes it harder for

the viewer to keep up, the fast movements makes the viewer feel like they are
there with the dancers, in the same room. The viewer also feels the passion felt
by the dancers when watching it because they are put in the mindset of the
dancers.
There is a narrative to the exhibition because it is about the two women dancing
and their relationship with each other and passion to the dance. This is shown by
how they laugh and smile together, you can tell they have a close bond. There is
a story told through their dance of their relationship. The audience is bought into
the narrative through the use of location.
The location it is in is a plain room with quite high, grand ceilings and a wooden
floor. It almost looks like the room in the video without all the props and lighting.
I think this plays with the idea of making you feel like you too are there, but
demonstrates how the dancers bring life to the room because without them, it
seems very lifeless.

Contrastingly to Dance the World, Douglas Gordons 24 hour psycho is only


displayed on one screen. This might be because it is less of an active video so it
doesnt need to look busy and dimensional, it is more serious so would only have
one screen to really draw the audience in and focus on the one video being
shown.
Douglas Gordon is a Scottish artist who is best known for the art piece, 24 hour
Psycho where he slows the film Psycho down to last 24 hours by changing it to
two frames per second rather than 24 frames per second. He exhibited it in
1933, in the spaces of Tramway, Glasgow. He is also known for his photography
where he experiments with burning the eyes on his subjects and other parts of
their faces. His work has been said to question how he give meaning to our
experience of things.
He really puts focus on the way he exhibits his work, using video installations
with multiple screens and music to create atmosphere and emotion for the
viewer so they really focus on his work during the exhibitions.
He has won multiple awards, including being the first video artist to win the
Turner Prize in 1996.

He installed his 24 hour Psycho on a single screen, however for his exhibition of
Generation he installed the videos on multiple screens on the floor as
demonstrated above with the photo.
In this video it is explained how he does video installations.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3mm-LNkmXU
The Guardian Art critic said he slowed down Psycho to include themes of:
recognition and repetition, time and memory, complicity and duplicity,
authorship and authenticity, darkness and light.
I think he chose this film because it was a classic that everyone has seen and
was a very striking film for when it was released in 1960. For example, it was
recognised as one of the first films to use lots of jump cuts to create montage so
they could act out someone being stabbed without it actually happening. Slowing
the film down creates emphasis to these whilst highlighting the metaphors used
in the film. An example of a metaphor that was used could be how the close up
of her eye as she dies fades into the shot of the blood pouring down the drain to
emphasise how the life is draining from her. Slowing this show down so much
makes the viewer more aware of the metaphor and allows people to fully analyse
the meaning behind the film.
This installation is a narrative because it is a slowed down version of the
narrative film Psycho which revolves around the story of a psychopath who
murders a woman.
The audience might be older people because they would be more familiar with
the original Psycho film because it came out in 1960. The nature might be people
who live in Scotland because the Generation exhibition is situated in Scotland.
The people who watch it would be art enthusiasts because the exhibition is a
contemporary art exhibition so people attending would appreciate the work
there.

Omer Fasts work is a lot newer than Douglas Gordons which was a past
installation artist. The similarities between both are that they are both displayed
on one screen and are both using an older video but bringing it back into art.
Omer Fast is a contemporary video artist who studies themes of trauma and its
psychological effects. A famous piece of his work was the video installation of
5,000 feet is the best where a drone pilot discusses the best height to fly a
drone and psychological effects with it. This is combined with footage from the
drone, 5,000 feet from the ground, following a young boy on his bicycle.
I like the way it is filmed from an alternative, birds eye view perspective. This
makes the audience feel they are being transported back in time to the war.
The voice narrates what is happening, giving the audience information about the
drone whilst they watch it as well as making them feel isolated from the modern
world and draws them into the camera movement more.
The way they follow a child makes it quite hard hitting for the viewer and shocks
them about the reality of the war brutality.
Displaying it in a war museum reaches the right audience because they would be
interested in the history of the war and relates to the video. Once seeing this
installation, people can continue to find out information about that time in
history throughout the museum.
The way it is displayed makes the viewer feel isolated from reality because the
room is sound proof and dark so it put them in the perspective of the boy on the
bike.
However, I feel there could more sound to build the mood, such as gun shots to
conclude the end and it was quite dark and depressing so might make people
feel sad after watching.
This is a non-narrative because it doesnt tell a story, although it does follow
someones journey, there is no narrative to it.

These artists use location, lighting and sound to draw the audience into their
work to create more emotion and an atmosphere in response to their work. They
all use space to captivate the viewer to their work. For example, Omer Fast uses
a black, sound proof room so that the viewer is completely focused on his work
and there are no distractions to make them feel like they arent living in the time
of the war.
All these installations have inspired me in my own work to use space carefully to
create a theme and to focus the viewers attention. I plan to do this by sectioning
my exhibition off in the room from the rest of the exhibitions so that people
arent distracted by other video installations also happening in the room. I was
inspired by Douglas Gordon to display my installation on a single screen to
centre the viewers attention to the video and not confusing them with different
screens playing at the same time.