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Friday, September 29, 2023

Fine Arts

Grimonprez exhibit is a dark masterpiece

Opening the Blaffer Gallery this semester is an exhibit composed of three pieces by internationally acclaimed video artist, Johan Grimonprez.

The exhibition takes up both floors of the gallery and consists of several audio and visual experiences. Two of his films, “Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y” and “Double Take” are also being shown.

The first room of the exhibit is of quotes painted on the walls. Within these quotes are the main motifs expressed in the exhibit, which include terrorism, birds, and misconception. One of the quotes tells of an event that happened on Sept. 11, 1948. The account tells of an incident where hundreds of birds crashed into the Empire State Building, falling to their death in the streets.

On a lighter note, quotes from the likes of Homer and Bart Simpson are featured in the exhibit. The quote poses the question, “what if we were all color blind and the sky was green”. On the surface this question is a great idea I am sure everyone has pondered. It also introduces a main theme in Grimonprez’s exhibit of double meanings.

“Double Take” (2009) is documentary film in which Alfred Hitchcock discusses the idea of being trapped in his own body and what he would do if he ever came across his double. The documentary centers around archival footage, as well as showing clips from several Alfred Hitchcock films.

Considering that it shows scenes from some of the more disturbing Alfred Hitchcock films, one might want to show discretion depending on one’s sensitivity to gore and violence.

“Dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y” is a documentary that was released in 1997, which depicts several airplane hijackings and attacks made by terrorists throughout the years.

Its subject matter seemed to be an eerie foreshadowing of Sept. 11. The film is a rough one to get through and some viewers might not be able to do so if they’re easily affected by gore. The film manipulates the footage and reports by interjecting captions, soundtracks, and cartoons to formulate a different story. While watching the video, you cannot help but be perplexed as to what is occurring as you watch fictional news reports transform right in front of your face into a work of fiction.

The exhibition will continue to be on display till April 2. Film times and more can be found on the Blaffer Gallery website.

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