Cheryl Pagurek

2008, 04:39 minutes, colour, English


Flow, a multilayered video, evokes a contemplative sense of looking into a different time and space, the present and past coexisting. Upside-down neighbourhood reflections were shot with the camera sometimes oriented upright and sometimes on its side. The resulting footage dislocates the familiar, with colours, shapes and movement taking on a visual role independent from the content portrayed. This footage was digitally merged with fifty-year-old colour home movies, often rotated upside-down or sideways. The resulting video work is a continually changing kaleidoscope of time and place, abstraction and representation, reality and memory. The soundscape is layered, sometimes evoking what is occurring visually, while at other times providing an additional interwoven narrative that is heard but not seen. The voice of an unseen doctor, dictating a report that describes the state of dementia and disorientation to person, place and time of a very elderly man, opens up the possibility of connections between the patient and the imagery of the old movies.

In addition to the screening version, Flow can also be presented as a video installation, projected down from the ceiling onto a white screen on the floor, so that our spatial experience is integral to the work. There is no “right way up”: we circulate around the piece, viewing it from all sides as one would walk around the edges of a large puddle of water, looking into its depths. The video is four minutes long, and loops continuously. The Flow projection can be installed in conjunction with the images from the Reflection series presented as backlit transparencies in light boxes. Together, both still and moving media emanate light in an otherwise dark space to dramatic effect. The still images combine upside-down reflections of houses, trees and streets in neighbourhood puddles, with decades-old colour snapshots, glimpsed like fragments of memory through the contemporary street images. They echo the many dualities at play in the video - surface and depth, past and present, reality and abstraction - and propose a space of introspection and reflection on our individual place within a temporal and spatial continuum.

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Critical Writing

by Holly Willis. Los Angeles Reader, Apr. 12, 1996.
Polar Recap
by Ann Kaneko. Afterimage, Nov. 1994, v. 22, no. 4.