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Inbetween Time 2006

february 1-5 2006


 Da Contents H2

February 3 2006
Duncan Speakman: Echo Location
Osunwunmi

Gob Squad: Managing fear
Winnie Love

Gob Squad: What does it mean to be a Vampire?
Niki Russell at the Gob Squad lecture

John Gillies: A Geography of Longing and Belonging
Marie-Anne Mancio

John Gillies: Old land, new testament
Ruth Holdsworth

Rosie Dennis: One from the heart
Winnie Love in the Rosie Dennis loop

Uninvited Guests: The art of wounding
Marie-Anne Mancio faces up to Univited Guests

February 2 2006
AC Dickson: Rising up to the challenge of his rivals
Niki Russell on eBay selling as performance

Bodies in Flight: And the word was made flesh
Osunwunmi

Carolyn Wright: Conversational miscues
When Winnie Love met Carolyn Wright

Carolyn Wright: Pleased to meet you, again
Niki Russell

David Weber-Krebs: Beyond waiting
Winnie Love

David Weber-Krebs: More than it says it is…
Ruth Holdsworth

David Weber-Krebs: Risk realised
Virginia Baxter

 

Monika Tichacek: Beautiful bad dream

Marie-Anne Mancio

Marie-Anne Mancio has a doctorate in Live Art. She lectures for Tate Modern’s online contemporary art course; is an associate member of independent creative producer Jean Cameron’s arts practice; and is currently studying for an M Litt in Creative Writing at Glasgow University.

The Shadowers The Shadowers
Monika Tichacek
A woodland scene: birdsong and azure sky; pools of sunlight on dappled green. A girl—ebony-haired, crimson-lipped, sitting at the foot of a tree. An older woman (is this the girl’s mother?) lifting the skirt of her dress to reveal thighs stitched together like a grotesque doll. There is no text, no speech. This is a video work in which 3 performers enact macabre rituals in the dark. This is the world of The Shadowers.

The dystopian fairytale is the territory of writers like Angela Carter, artists Paula Rego and Matthew Barney (particularly his Cremaster series), and film-maker David Lynch. Monika Tichacek’s video is reminiscent of each of these in its dark blend of the Gothic and the surreal. The work has the feel of a bad dream. It’s as if we drift in and out of consciousness, our sense of continuity fragmented by the work’s distribution across 3 large screens. An image appears on one, then disappears. A girl standing with her legs apart, blindfolded, dress hitched up; the same girl seated on another screen.

Slowly, the video explores the sublime and the simultaneous relationship of the (female) body to nature. The natural and the artificial are deliberately confused, ambiguous. Are those translucent pomegranate seeds or rubies that sit like bubbles of blood on the woman’s face? Butterflies and insects are embroidered and sequined in forest hues. There is the ominous, reverberating drone of bees. Sometimes the body is reduced to its animal impulses. One performer feeds off another’s face. There is violence: hair is grabbed to drag the body; a hair pin slowly pierces a woman’s tongue, securing her to a tree stump, elongated fingernails nailed to the bark. Later her tongue is blue, her face bruised purple like battered fruit. The zip on a dress looks like a wounded spine as a woman crawls through foliage. Despite their explicitness, there is an incredible beauty in the framing of the images. We are made to focus on minutiae: a globule of saliva travelling down cat-gut strings; the movement of a hair; the quiver of lights like fireflies on a branch; the blur and sparkle of a jacket. We are not always sure what we are looking at. At times, images glow like jewels in the pitch black night.

An accordion plays tango and 2 women dance together. This dance—said to have originated in the brothels of South America—is typically associated with sexual passion. We see the performers’ legs criss-cross against the screen until they have woven a spider’s web of threads, a metaphor for desire and how we become trapped within it.


The Shadowers, Monika Tichacek, Arnolfini Dark Studio, Feb 2

Marie-Anne Mancio has a doctorate in Live Art. She lectures for Tate Modern’s online contemporary art course; is an associate member of independent creative producer Jean Cameron’s arts practice; and is currently studying for an M Litt in Creative Writing at Glasgow University.

© Marie-Anne Mancio; for permission to reproduce apply to realtime@realtimearts.net

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