Artwork

Fang Lu
Cinema, 2013

  • 7-channel video installation, sound 5.1, Ed. 3/5
  • 19:19 min
  • Acquired in 2014

The works by Fang Lu are among those positions in art that operate by questioning and expanding production, reception, communication and interaction in a field of its own that borders on theatre, performance and video art. The artwork Cinema, also, has as its theme the transcending of genre boundaries. In spite of the title, it presents us with a theatre space rather than a conventional cinema space. Four cameras are trained on the actions of a female protagonist, who also takes on the roles of producer and recipient. It is not only the production that is governed by changes of perspective: the views from the differently positioned cameras are presented in three large-scale projections and on four televisions. We have no way of knowing whether the actions of the performer during this process of interactive image generation are improvised or staged, or to what extent the movements of her body and her adjustments to the console are influenced by concerns as to how her image appears and the internalizing of the gaze of others. As a digital panopticon with multiple visual relationships, what the complex observation scenario of Cinema really shows us is an ambivalent freedom that oscillates between self-empowerment and self‑regulation. Cinema makes it all too clear that new image technologies do not just process effects and affects – they can also constitute a monitoring regime of the gaze.

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