ALEXINE CHANEL + YOANN PISTERMAN
Black box is a pressurised image body - Alexine Chanel’s personal archive of over 210 000 photographs is projected at great speed - 12 years’ worth of photographic data, each year squashed into an hour of ultra-rapid motion slide-show - against a sound body - Alexine Chanel’s dream archive, read, recorded, quaked up and re-composed by artist Yoann Pisterman. The spoken, dreamy words erratically collide with the stroboscopic image flow.
Each collision spurts a new narrative, over and over again, Like a combustion engine, a semantic motor.
The two artists and their two systems of recording reality and memory interrogate both our subconsciousness and our actuality, our perception of it. It may be seen as the culminating point between an undetermined beginning and a spectacular end. Black box produces an ever changing, serially explosive energy, too ethereal, too fast to grasp: what is remembered, what is forgotten?
For the last twelve years, Alexine Chanel has been digitally recording her daily life - from the moment she wakes till sleep. She has been emulating the aircraft black box principle of recording everything: she shoots everything around her. Instead of editing the plentiful photographic material, she leaves this huge image bank unabridged: she compresses whole digital memory cards into very rapid motion slide-shows. Each image is shown for a blitzschnell 3 frames: barely long enough, and not always enough, to register on the retina. She calls these intense, fast-forwarded pulsating visual journeys “capsules”.
For Black Box, twelve years of memory cards were compressed into twelve capsules, a whole year squashed into an hour of ultra-rapid motion slide-show. The twelve video journeys each palpitating with an overload of photos of intimate and public spaces - all over the world - with Neukölln, Alexine’s home and place of work of fifteen years, as its geographic epicentre.
Yoann Pisterman is a composer of experimental ambient music. He focuses on the unbridled narratives of the unconscious, the difficulty of memorizing: what portion of reality is remembered, which part of dreams are forgotten?
He audio-recorded Alexine Chanel reading her dream journal, another unfiltered source of information on her environment.
Using the read dreams as a raw sound material, he created fragmented poetic compositions, recalling internal explosions and traumas.
Stutters, glitches, echoes, arrhythmia, onomatopoeia and explosive sounds, are all part of Yoann Pisterman’s vocabulary in this experiment.