EMPAC, Studio 2, Troy, NY
Friday, April 20th-21st, 2012
Opening reception is on Friday, April 20, 2012 from 5:30-8:30pm. Also open for viewing Saturday, April 21, from 7-10pm.
This two channel video installation by Boryana Rossa examines gender performance in film after the Cold War through re-enactments of scenes from chosen cinematic works. These films are from USSR, Russia and Bulgaria and cover the period from 1920s to the end of the 2000s. By reading these films through the lens of contemporary theory, the artist seeks to understand what are the essential transformations of gender concepts in post-socialist countries. The reenactments are from well known films like ”Circus” 1936, “Daisies” 1967 and lesser known titles like “Monday Morning” 1967, “Ladies Turn” 1987; “Hammer and Sickle” 1994, “Mission London” 2008 and “Miracle” 2009. The two channels of the video show both the original scene and the re-enactment. The work also explores gender performance cross-culturally, situating the research in a global context. For instance the actors who participate in the reenactments are from the US, which integrates issues of cultural translation into the process. The characters are interpreted through the cultural and political prism of each of the participants. The process of creating this project relies on a critical exchange of thoughts and notions, where re-enactment is perceived as interpretation, rather than a copy of the chosen scene. Finding commonalities, rather than cultural differences is the goal.
The theoretical and historical research behind this work is part of Rossa’s dissertation for the RPI doctoral program in Electronic Arts.