Cinémathèque Robert-Lynen, Paris
Tuesday, May 16th, 2017
Trisha Baga, The Voice, 2017. Video, 24'. Courtesy of the artist & Vilma Gold (London)
The Voice, a film Trisha Baga presented earlier this year at 356 Mission (Los Angeles) in a 3-D version, begins in the atmosphere charged with suspense and cheap false effects of the improbable history of an invisible woman. Initiated by a few notes of introductory music immediately recognizable as the Universal productions one, the film is built in a succession of heterogeneous scenes, combining photographs of newspaper (the sad reminder of Donald Trump's victory in November 2016), images shot by the artist in her studio, on a family trip to the Philippines or during shopping malls tours, to movie clips showing spectators wearing 3-D glasses, a new appendage of our digital lives, unfolding a breathless vision of a fragmented reality. The soundtrack, an erratic mix of disturbing thriller music, Pop music or Asian Pop, only adds to the confusion.
The "plot" alternates a narrative vaguely recalling the plot of The Little Mermaid (the one who gave her voice in exchange for legs to seduce a prince saved from the waters) and a scientific presentation on mitosis, a process explicated in cell biology by which a single cell would split in two and if not corrected in time, recalls the voice-over, could lead to genetic disorders or almost universal illiteracy!
In the vein of her previous works, Trisha Baga plays a delirium of images and sounds and juggles between different atmospheres: thriller, fantasy film or scientific documentary suddenly converted into holiday movies in anarchic back and forth.
On the screen float small sculptures resembling colored ceramics that are only chewing gums already chewed. The voiceover announces the beginning of a Rorschach test and the famous analysis of the cards starts such as the acceleration of rhythm, the oxygen rate becomes critical like our own perception, between physical reality and a diffracted hysterical virtual universe.
Born in 1985 in Venice (USA), Trisha Baga lives and works in New York. She studied at the Cooper Union School of Art and Bard College. Recently she has exhibited at 356 Mission (Los Angeles), at the Whitney Museum (New York) and at the Kunstverein Munich. She participated in the 2016 Biennial of Moving Image (Geneva) and in group exhibitions at the Folkwang Museum (Essen), at Kunst-Werke (Berlin) and at the musée d'Art moderne de la Ville de Paris in 2015.