Performance, Video, Video Installation

Considering theories of punishment that shape the self and the ways in which one carries those impressions that have been made upon them, this work is in constant flux between inside to outside, self-criticism to external criticism, control to lack of control, comfort and pleasure to fear and pain. This fluctuation pulls the viewer towards realizing that which is human construction is the first step in achieving freedom.

Artist Amy Karle sectioned off the body by measurement and ‘inscribed’ on it. Simultaneously, an analog video of this performance was fed into a video of shapes similar to those inscribed on the body in real-time with voice-driven image mixing, so that all of the elements worked together to create a video which unfolded as the performance progressed.

The narrative is a whispering voice in constant transfer from the inward, private voice (voice inside our head) to the publicly imposed (outside forces). The sound reflexively controls the image in sections, and the image controls the sound in places. The use of the ruler to measure the body depicts the constant doubtful “measuring up” that persons impose on themselves. The cutting-out displays the ways we attempt to fit our self into social and normative constructs and circles. As the video shows, this does not and cannot always occur. At times, the body claims the entire image, and at other times, the shapes take over. This come-and-go of the sound-video relationship displays the hierarchy of distortion both emotionally and electronically. The work seemingly comes to a close, or end, then comes back with a vengeance, as the cycle of guilt and self-punishment continues.

Amy Karle collaborated with Aaron Miller (video) and Annie Fieldmeier (voice) to create this video at the Experimental Television Center.