ENGINEER ARCHITECT / VISUAL ARTIST
Video installation / Performance
Kask, School of Arts, Ghent 2014
In November 2013, Jolien left Belgium for a four month trip to Southeast Asia. Discovering all kind of unique places, she decided to register them with her camera, looking for ways to transmit the experience of a certain place with video material. Once she found an interesting place, she choose very precisely her camera’s point of view and stepped in front of the camera to explore the place herself. The idea of this action is that the spectator, watching the video, can identify himself with her presence in different places and can experience how the places differ from one another, revealing their uniqueness. After her trip, she decided to continue this research at home. She edited images made in Belgium with images of Southeast Asia. In addition to the video material, Jolien also created a performance piece, in accord with the video. During the performance, she invited people to follow her, exploring different architectural spaces at the location where the video material was shown as well. Again, through the movements and gestures she made, she suggested the spectator to focus on the spaces – this time in real time - trying to make the experience of a space perceivable. Both the performance piece and the video installation can be considered as parts of one artwork. Seeing both pieces and experiencing the different places,the meaning of really ‘being’ somewhere in a world where virtual spaces – Internet, smartphones, etc. – are the more and more present, is called into question. Where are you? Are you here, now? Or are you somewhere else? Where? In the world of the video images, in the world of the performance, in your own head, are really present in the here and now? Do you let yourself wander into the video images or do you refuse to ignore the ‘illusion’ of the video world? An illusion that becomes even more perceivable by positioning two screens in front of each other. One screen is being projected with images of places where Jolien is present; the other screen, on the contrary, reveals images of the same place but without her presence. The unoccupied places can be considered as an invitation for the spectator to take place in the projected space.
REPRESENT, a research about the ‘representation’ of architectural places, about putting those places into ‘present’ again, through a certain ‘presence’. Joliens presence? Your presence? Both? Or are we absent? REPRESENT focuses on all of these questions and invites you to experience places in a unique way.