Repetition has been a strategy inherent to video and film art practices since it’s inception. The four artists in EACH OF OUR ERASURE employ repetition to make visible our participation in the production of language, social structures, and war. Brooklyn and Chapel Hill based artist and writer Hong-An Truong combines archival footage of bombs detonating in Viet Nam during the French Indochina period with the soundtrack of the 1965 pop hit California Dreaming, sung in Vietnamese karaoke. “Playing with the idea that nostalgia can be evoked without memory or experience, and also by the co-dependent relationship between the West’s present and the Other’s desire for that present, this video appropriates archival images as a way to consider translation, postcolonial subjectivity, and sentimentality,” says Truong. Nathan Danilowicz carves into a concrete floor creating a crude mandala of sacrifice and servitude that encompasses his body with repetitive pattern and his own blood; in the artist’s words, “Much of the action is hidden beneath the body…what we can see is the undulating movements of bone and muscle beneath…skin. The surface of the concrete and the surface of the body…revealing and concealing the artist’s ritual that culminates with drips of his blood sprent onto the textured floor.” Pasucal Sisto born in Barcelona and based in Los Angeles presents a contemporary urban flashback to A Wrinkle In Time, the childhood science fiction novel by Madeleine L’Engle where kick balls bizarrely appear to bounce in synch. Artist and educator Gina Osterloh presents two early video works where repetition of everyday gesture lay bare the absurdity and impotence of language. Through diverse aesthetic practices, the works in EACH OF OUR ERASURE occupy uncertain ground via underlying forces of trepidation, absurdity, horror, as well as collaboration and play with hegemonic structures.
Explosions In The Sky (Dien Bien Phu 1954), Part 4 of series Adaptation Fever
TRT 3:00 minutes with sound
Explosions in the Sky (Dien Bien Phu 1954) is part of the video series titled Adaptation Fever, a series of four discrete video works that approach the archive through appropriation and disruption. The Battle of Dien Bien Phu 1954 marked the official end of French military involvement in Vietnam. With the sound track of “California Dreamin” via Vietnamese karaoke, Truong’s video collapses the horror of bombs detonating through a familiar and reminiscent 1965 pop melody sung by millions throughout the world. Using found footage of Viet Nam during its French Indochina period, this project explores questions about the politics of representation and the construction of difference in relation to history, time, and memory. Playing with the idea that nostalgia can be evoked without memory or experience, and also by the co-dependent relationship between the West’s present and the Other’s desire for that present, this video appropriates archival images as a way to consider translation, postcolonial subjectivity, and sentimentality.
Hong-An Truong is an artist and writer based in New York and North Carolina. She has been an artist-in-resident at the Center for Photography at Woodstock and the Visual Studies Workshop. Her photographs and videos have been shown at the Godwin-Ternbach Museum in Queens, the ISCP, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Laguna Art Museum, Torrance Art Museum, Oakland University Art Gallery, and DobaeBacsa Gallery in Seoul. Her work was included in 1968: Then and Now at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2008 and screened at the PDX Documentary and Experimental Film Festival in 2009. Recent group shows include Art in General, Gallery 456 at the Chinese American Arts Council, both in New York, and a screening at DeSoto Gallery in Los Angeles. She was recently included in the group show, Perspectives: Carol Bove, Lena Herzog, Matthew Porter, Ed Templeton, Hong-An Truong at the International Center for Photography in New York. Truong received her MFA at the University of California, Irvine and was a studio fellow in the Whitney Independent Study Program. She is an Assistant Professor in the Art Department at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
untitled (floor carving)
single channel video with sound
In his untitled (floor carving) video work from 2006, Nathan Danilowicz documents his performative actions using a fixed camera position, engaging the viewer as if she were looking down, from a bird’s eye view at the artist as he mysteriously scrapes and carves the concrete floor. Much of the action is hidden beneath the body of the artist– what we can see is the undulating movements of bone and muscle beneath the artist’s skin. The surface of the concrete and the surface of the body– together, in accord with one another, revealing and concealing the artist’s ritual that culminates with drips of his blood sprent onto the textured floor. The video is a truncated document of a longer performance and is accompanied by a sound clip featuring Marlon Brando’s character, Colonel Kurtz, from Apocalypse Now. The audio underscores the visual atmosphere and questions Danilowicz aims to put forth– that of morality in the face of horror, servitude, love, and sacrifice. The viewer is witnessing the artist in his studio, losing himself in the rapture of creation and erasure.
Nathan Danilowicz explores mortality, sci-fi shamanism, sexuality, and the liminal space between darkness and understanding. Solo exhibitions include Latned Atsär in Los Angeles (2011), Crisp London/Los Angeles (2008 and 2009/2010) and the H. Lewis Gallery in Baltimore (2004). Group exhibitions include the Santa Monica Museum of Art, Cirrus Gallery, Telic Arts Exchange, Raid Projects, Eighth Veil, 533 Gallery, and Art LA Contemporary in Los Angeles, Locust Projects and TwentyTwenty Projects in Miami, OK By Gallery and Zoo Art Fair in London, Green Gallery East in Milwaukee, QNA Waypoint in Marfa, TX, and performances at Jason Rhoades’ Black Pussy Soirées. He received his MFA in New Genres from UCLA in 2007, and attended the MacDowell Colony residency in 2008. He is a contributing writer for artUS magazine, and his work has appeared in TimeOut London, Miami New Times, The Baltimore Sun, Baltimore’s City Paper, and Beautiful Decay. He also hosts the Fucked Up Drawing Party throughout Los Angeles. Born in Pennsylvania, he is based in Los Angeles.
28 YEARS IN THE IMPLICATE ORDER
Single channel video loop with sound
The video consists of a locked off shot of an empty parking lot. A centered sodium vapor light illuminates the night landscape. 28 red balls bounce up and down in a chaotic random order. As the video reaches its mid point, the balls align themselves until they reach the point where they all bounce at the same precise moment and then resume to go back into chaos.
Raised in Barcelona, Spain, Pascual Sisto graduated with a BFA from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, and a MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles. Recent exhibitions include the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art (Istanbul, Turkey), Young Artist Biennial in Bucharest (Romania), Venice Biennale collateral events (Italy), Arts Santa Monica (Barcelona, Spain), Arti et Amicitae (Amsterdam, NL) and Five Thirty Three (Los Angeles, USA). Pascual Sisto lives and works in Los Angeles.
Just Between Us
TRT 2 minutes (no sound)
A wave hello, a hug, a handshake – all common conventional gestures which hold meaning or at least signify a means of communication specific to one’s culture. How did these arbitrary social gestures come to form meaning? Why do they mean anything at all? Just Between Us is a slow and playful display as to how we (re)perform these gestures and cultural norms, that are internally and externally mapped onto our bodies and intrinsic to our identity.
TRT: 1 minute (from infinite loop, no sound)
Through the repetition and loop inherent to video the body becomes impersonal and mechanical, embedded in a cyberspace thumbnail aesthetic.
Gina Osterloh is an artist and educator based in Los Angeles, California. Her photographic practice combines elements of sculpture, performance, and installation. Osterloh’s work investigates operations of mimicry and perception within the photographic plane – to form new ground between abstraction and identity. This September 2011, she has been selected to attend the Woodstock Artist in Residency Program for Photograph in Woodstock, New York. In 2007-2008, Osterloh was a Fulbright Scholar recipient to the Philippines, during which she created a new body of photographs that depicted spaces made from everyday office paper used in Manila. During her Fulbright, Osterloh also researched conceptual artist practices in the Philippines; and at Monte Vista Projects LA, curated the exhibition Minimum Yields Maximum that presented conceptual and political works from the Philippines, Vietnam, and California. Other awards include a Durfee ARC Grant 2010 and a Completion Grant by Silverlens Foundation, Philippines 2008. She has exhibited widely including Hong Kong, Manila, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York City. Reviews of her work include Art in America, Hyphen Magazine, Art Asia Pacific, Asian Art News, Art Monthly Australia, Art on Paper, Giant Robot, the LA Times, and Art Forum Online. Osterloh received her BA in Media Studies from DePaul University and a MFA in Studio Art from University of California, Irvine. Gina Osterloh’s work is represented by Silverlens Gallery, Manila and François Ghebaly Gallery, Los Angeles.