film & video

Your Chapters Here Are Now Mine (2014).
 

Wishes (2009), Robin Bernat and Blake Williams.

 

Flowerfilm (2009)

Intended as a short prelude to the screening for “Wishes” (2009), the flowers were a part of the “Wishes” set photographed after the main filming was complete. Audience members would see the Flowerfilm on a continuous loop as they entered into the theatre. Made with the assistance of Blake Williams of Proper Medium.

 

Real Lush.

 

Little Fictions (2003).

Shot in Super 8 and edited digitally, “Little Fictions” presents a series of vignettes: scenes from a Children’s party, a letter to Rainer Maria Rilke, views from a country road…. intended to function like a visual book of short stories. It is the precursor to a later work, “Real Lush: short stories” (2008). With the participation of the fellows and fellow travelers at The American Academy in Rome, 2001, Cameron Hollister and Pasha kitty.

 

Lamentation (2002).

September 16, 2001

I write this statement about lamentation before its completion as, no matter what the final piece, I think my ideas will be unchanged. It is a piece a long time in the making and big gaps of time exist between the filming of sequences. I point this out only because I think it might be relevant to the content.

Entirely, this work is about the loss of my beloved, Daniel Zalik, who was killed in a camping accident in Argentina almost two years ago. Another work, American Pastoral, has come and gone without some putting to rest of my grief. That work was, perhaps, a good start of what seems like a long journey of understanding something about faith and grace.

Thanks to participants Tom Williams, Charles Reeve and David Butler.

Having become separated from his family, Daniel had climbed to the top of a promontory for a better view of the landscape, slipped and fell on rocks knocking him unconscious, plummeting into a ravine and washed downstream – his body found several days later.

For months and months, I replayed this scenario over in my head. I couldn’t reconcile in my mind how the worst possible event could have happened to Daniel and how alone he was. The image of his body, lifeless and unattended for days, his vulnerability, his mortality, how quickly he was here and then not here: I was tormented.

Finally, I went to Rome for an artist residency and on the second day, I visited the Borghese Museum. In the last gallery, I turned around to see Raphael’s “Deposition”. Being in Rome, of course, these images are in every church, in every little chapel, in every street altar: there was no getting away from this picture.

I don’t know what else to say that this painting doesn’t say all by itself and how it addresses my personal grief and reminds me of the universal nature of sorrow and suffering and what can be comforting about that. (that is what these paintings were intended to do.) Daniel, who was an orthodox Jew, I’m sure, might not much appreciate these visual or metaphoric comparisons of him to Jesus but, luckily, he was also forgiving and generous.

 

Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places (2001).

Looking for love in all the wrong places (2001) is about desire. Here, I am trying to distill down to its essence a predominant theme in my work. For several years, I have been exploring different ideas about desire: romantic desire, spiritual desire and its aspects of effortlessness and effort, human and natural adaptation. These two pieces (parts one and two) function as vignettes of the seeking aspect of desire. The title references a kind of kitsch country-pop song – part of a new interest in Americana, of sorts. Music by Neil Fried and Railroad Earth.

 

 

effortless (1998).

Effortless (1998) in its original presentation at Solomon projects in Atlanta, Georgia was intended as an installation: three short single-channel video sequences appear simultaneously on three separate monitors, each mounted on a pedestal that rests in pools of melted beeswax.

The video is about aspects of human endeavor, some requiring enormous effort while others seem to be “effortless.” These ideas are portrayed through a love poem, a story about incomprehension and finally three sequences of a garden sprinkler whose motion is accompanied by three preludes by Chopin.

This work was included in the 2000 Whitney Biennial of The Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art. It is in their permanent collection.