Super 8 video, black and white film reversal 2’56’’, 2023

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Rituale numero uno records the repetitive throwing of a white shirt that belonged to the artist’s late father. Through the performative action, the shirt seems to come alive, suspended, inflated, and animated with movement, only immediately falling back motionless. With each throw, the object acquires multiple shapes, reaching an immediate and disruptive plasticity lost within seconds: despite the artist’s effort, it lies dead and inanimate on the studio floor. This impossible struggle against the force of gravity unearths the tensions between what is gone and what remains, taking the form of a vestige engorged with yearning. The action disrupts the presumed passivity of the inanimate object, turning it into an active participant in the artist’s negotiation with death and the material relations to his father. The audio track is part of the chance discovery of a set of tapes and a tape recorder, on which the recorded tune was sung by the artist’s father to test the functioning of the machine. Distorted to fit the video’s length, the father’s voice becomes uncanny, both familiar and dissimilar to itself. Foregrounding sound and oral exchanges as central to our intimate relationships, the tune recalls a lullaby hummed from the hereafter, breaching the threshold between life and death, proximity and absence, past and present. The video was taped with a Super8 camera at slow-motion speed. The length of the video is 2 minutes and 56 seconds, the complete duration of a cartridge at 36fps.

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