Program ESCAPE – The Secret

Program ESCAPE

The Secret

Video art, landscape

Avi Pal ,720 x576, 00:03:44

The video is a brief novella with an introduction, culmination, and finale.The first part (the credits) are dark shots, the sound of steps. The second (main) part — “stepping” shots of the landscape, and the sound of a radio transmission of secret codes is mixed in with the sound of steps. The third part has shots of a city at night, and silence.

Given the rather aggressive soundtrack of the first two parts, the third is perceived as a certain kind of silence.

This main (second) part of the video is a performance, throughout which the artist walks down the city streets and films everything he passes.

The semantic structure of the performance is based on the following.

The walking person makes three movements at once: forward, up, and down. He usually does not notice the rhythmic motions up and down. He does not concentrate on the natural, routine processes that occur in his body and with his body during the process of walking; it is a reflex.

While walking, the legs make pendulum-like movements in relation to the walker’s vertical axis.

The most complex movement is that of the feet, which, besides simple movement forward and upward/downward also change their angle relative to the axis of the knee.

The rhythm of all mentioned movements is the same, and comparable with heartbeats, inhalation/exhalation, and the rhythm of a march.

If the video camera is affixed to the upper surface of the foot (i.e., the foot is used as the top of a tripod), then the “eye” of the camera will make pendulous motions in the rhythm of walking, and thus record all the objects on its path.

As a result, everything that the viewer sees on the screen is a trace of this performance.

Valeriy Ayzenberg