New West, 2018
Single-channel video, with sound
Filmed in a ghost town in Montana, New West uses the same performer as both a woman and a male cowboy in drag. This performer completes gestural tasks that are both ironic in nature and Sisyphean in their inability to be fulfilled. Washing abandoned buildings with water, digging a hole in the dirt with one’s foot, take on a Brechtian severity and rhythm as the video loops. The video also utilizes aerial drone footage of the ghost town that has been turned into 3D models to create digital fly-throughs of these “spaces” using the game software, Unity. The degraded and digitally corrupted models feel both recognizable in their retention of photographic data but are also obviously impossible and slightly cartoonish in their flatness. These science-fiction landscapes endeavor to create a deeper conversation with the primary footage and also with the performer that is acting out gestures of nostalgia and gendered labor.
Work exhibited at:
Mapping Worlds, Spaceus, Cambridge, MA