Rosa Barba’s elegiac handling of time and space in her film works, as well as her sculptural uses of celluloid and its viewing apparatuses, have marked the artist as an exceptional chronicler of material and immaterial presence. For her Performa Commission Barba has created a new 35mm film, which will be performed as a live event on the cinema screen in Anthology Film Archives’ screening theatre, whilst being fragmented around the space on 16mm films and filmic sculptures, which will repeat an individual formal aspect, such as a sentence or a sound. Whilst almost behaving like characters, or stand-ins for the viewer, these films also interact with one another as though they were a splintered ensemble, fading in and out, and accompanied by an electronic musical accompaniment created by Jan St Werner of Mouse on Mars, and a group of professional voiceover actors who will perform live dialogue from various points in space. Subconscious Society - Live is an attempt to archive the last century, suggesting a paradigm shift, which is represented in the form of a social community, inhabiting a transitional realm, as they make a final attempt at assigning and archiving objects from the past. Here the past exists only as a reference to itself and the details of the present are not fully decipherable yet.
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