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|Untitled (Hypno Project), 2009|
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Leung Chi Wo
Raul Ortega Ayala
WITH (with you.co.uk)
Doug Fishbone's installation, video and performance works place the viewer in an awkward position where we are forced to explore our interpretative resources. In previous videos and performances the artist ransacked the internet and mostly Google Image Search - to illustrate and undermine his arresting, repulsive and undeniably amusing monologues on contemporary media and our cultural, social and political (sub)life. His work weaves elaborate narrative and visual tapestries from familiar freely found imagery that question the way information is presented, manipulated and processed in the current cultural and visual landscape. Interested in the politics of representation the artistís monologues constantly shift, narrating grey areas between our perceived notions of fact and fiction, myth and propaganda, comedy and advertising.
In a work from 2009, Untitled (Hypno Project), Fishbone extended the viewing processes in his earlier work by focusing on the reaction of the viewer to a brand new video. Twelve protagonists watch the video in real-time, for the first time, in an altered state of consciousness. All have been hypnotized and each was given specific suggestions instructing them to behave in certain ways at different visual and aural cues. They were then woken, and filmed as they viewed the video. Their reactions raise a broad range of questions about manipulation and behavioral conditioning, and the relativity of perception and understanding.
Fishbone has recently produced a feature-length action film that connects two vastly different audiences of the Western art world and the African home video market. Filmed in Ghana with major Ghanaian celebrities, the movie's only artistic intervention is the insertion of Fishbone, a white American artist, as the lead role in a completely African production. The work fully adopts Ghanaian film making conventions, taking advantage of the shared language used and the low cost structure of the Ghanaian home video industry. In this new project Fishbone continues to examine the complex relationship between perception and reality and the politics of representation while simultaneously asking wider questions about race, globalization and notions of a shared visual language. Elmina launched at Tate Britain in October and runs until 13.01.11.
For his second solo show at Rokeby, in parallel to Tate Britainís screening of Elmina, Fishbone presents a series of photographs shot on location in Ghana during filming. Intended as an extension of Elmina, these photographs create an alternative experience of Fishbone's project. Removed from the continuous narrative action of the film, examination of the photographs alone calls into question not only the relationship between still photography and cinema, but also that of action and documentation. Denied a seamless narrative, the audience is forced to read Fishbones project through different means.
Fishbone is an American artist living and working in London. He earned an MA in Fine Art degree at Goldsmiths College in 2003. He is well known for his project 30,000 Bananas, a huge mountain of ripe bananas installed in the middle of London's Trafalgar Square and later given away free to the audience. Fishbone's video and performance work was included in the British Art Show 6 in 2005-2006, a national touring exhibition held every five years to feature the best in contemporary British art and he has performed at London's Hayward Gallery and the ICA London amongst other venues. He recently participated in the exhibition Laughing in A Foreign Language at the Hayward Gallery, London and the Busan Bienniale in Korea. His new film is currently being exhibited at The Tate Britain and work was included in Rude Britannia again at Tate Britain earlier this year.
|Doug Fishbone is represented by ROKEBY
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