Reading Response #7

Bruce Nauman’s Bouncing in the Corner No. 1 and Sofía Córdova’s La Vedette De America are like mirror images of one another. Córdova’s visually aligns the two by mimicking Nauman’s white t-shirt, black pants, and bare feet and filming in a similar space. However, from there the videos being to diverge. In Bouncing in the Corner No. 1 Nauman’s head is outside of the frame, and the video is filmed sideways. For the entire hour, Nauman falls backwards and bounces off of the wall towards the camera, making the experience pretty monotonous to watch. By contrast, in Córdova’s 10-minute piece she dances to Iris Chacón’s Tu Boquita in a continuous loop as the quality of the audio slowly degrades. I liked that La Vedette De America was static, but maintained visual interest with small changes to her motions and the music.

Although only Córdova’s, piece was intended to do so, Bouncing in the Corner No. 1 and Nadav Assor’s Lessons on Leaving Your Body are a discussion on the body and positionality as they impact the creation of art. With Nauman’s head out of the frame, the body of a young white man is perceived as a generic placeholder representative of humanity as a whole. Meanwhile Córdova’s race and gender are inseparable from her work, and can only appeal to niche groups. Often time white people are discussed as having no culture, but doing so makes white cultures the universal norm and forces non-white people and their artwork into the margins. With modern technology such as drones and telepresence robotsLessons on Leaving Your Body questions how our conception of bodies must expand to account for these changes. These devices, which allow us to see, hear, and sometimes even impact spaces far from our physical bodies. Assor’s video was the most interesting because it was so much more mobile, but I think that also made room for more interpretations of his work.

 

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