VOX — Centre de l’image contemporaine

Gilbert Boyer

Portrait of Gilbert Boyer
Portrait of Gilbert Boyer.

At this stage of the project, six weeks before the beginning of the event, I am creating random video itineraries downtown. At first, my explorations revealed nothing special aside from the references perceptible in my field of vision. It is upon second viewing—after the fashion of Antonioni’s film Blow-Up—that the neighbourhood reveals itself. Via the chosen markers, surfaces, textures, words, objects or their abstractions appear. This substance captured by the camera in this way generates meaning—or, conversely, deconstructs a meaning that is too homogeneous. Can one acquire a true sense of the neighbourhood through these glances, these quick trips, these superficial palpations? In Blow-Up, the corpus delicti is nude and female; I cannot help drawing a parallel with the neighbourhood. That corpus is still on offer here, in the sex shops and the porn cinemas, where quite often it takes the form of a direct proposition in the street (“Est-ce que je peux te parler deux minutes?”; “Allô, veux-tu parler?”; “Are you busy? Come with me?”). Scanning the sidewalks the way they do with a disoriented gaze at things and going through the videotape in ack-and-forth movements—slowing down or speeding up the motion, freeze-framing or letting the image proceed in slow motion—perhaps sums up my investigation of the neighbourhood. [Source : VOX, 2008]

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