Doug Ischar

2007, 17:00 minutes, colour, English


brb is built around a ‘saved’ chat text between two mutually infatuated men. Grafted to this halting, obsessive, and repetitive text, are image and sound worlds that trouble, dispute and upstage it. The imagery is documentary in nature, and aside from occasional super-impositions and speed variations, is presented ‘straight.’ But its function here is meta-representational. Its dumps onto the linear chat text a pile of potential elsewheres and otherwises. The audio track functions similarly. Road noise, under-miked street fair conversations, and esoteric music serve as counterpoint rather than accompaniment to image and on-screen text. These piled up elements are meant to cohabit brb - rather than cohere – to complicate linear flow rather than facilitate it. The video’s subjects are positioned as a cluster of overlapping binaries: desire/pleasure; age/youth; proximity/distance; virtual/actual; top/bottom, and so on.

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Critical Writing

Two Platitudes for Doug Ischar
by Sholem Krishtalka. Toronto: Vtape, 2013.