the camera person, the interviewer, the interviewee, his wife and her lover…

Very interesting and intensive few days here at the UNIDEE residence, artist/film maker Sally Gutierrez and cultural theorist Jose Bueso are running a 3 day workshop. So they arrive like a veritable “art tornado” full of theory and exercises and it’s all great, interesting, stimulating…


Funnily enough, it is one very simple video exercise that provides for me the most interesting debate as well as an insight into the complex interpersonal relationships that co-exist under the spotlight of this micro-cosmos we call an art residence…

The exercise –  is a lesson in who exactly “holds the power” when it comes to video reportage… groups are split into 3 and take turns in the roles of film maker, interviewer and interviewee. Under a series of rules including no post production or post film editing, the residents film and reply to questions previously set forth by the group.

The next day we watched the results of the video exercise. Obviously we have 3 very different videos. Some people take the exercise very seriously while others do not, and those who do not take it seriously affect the work of other protagonists in the same group. Issues such as the (male) camera operator training a very male gaze on the female form (a fellow resident) causes much debate…and discomfort for some. But it’s great…an adult discussion about complex issues and the shifting balances of power that arise every time you point a video camera at someone or something….it’s a dirty job but someone’s got to do it…

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