by VALIE EXPORT
Adjunct Dislocations reflects on the perception of space and points of view shown to us in film. The human body (in this case, that of director VALIE EXPORT) becomes, here, together with the cameras, the main actor.
Cinema, the human body, society, feminism. These are some of the themes dealt with by the artist and director VALIE EXPORT during her long and prolific career. During her artistic performances, as well as in the films she herself has shot, the artist from Linz has often ‘amused’ herself by analysing the world we live in in all its most controversial aspects, surprising audiences and critics alike and even sometimes antagonising the Austrian press and authorities. With regard to her reflections on cinema, on the other hand, the film Adjunct Dislocations, made in 1973 and subsequently also shown in a ‘multiplied’ version, i.e. projected on several monitors at the same time as part of exhibitions and installations, is particularly interesting.
Adjunct Dislocations, therefore, reflects on the perception of space and points of view shown to us in cinema. The human body (in this case, that of the director herself) becomes, here, therefore, together with the cameras, the main actor. For the occasion, in fact, VALIE EXPORT had two cameras attached to her, one in front and one on her back.
First, then, we see the rooms of a house. The director moves inside it to explore the spaces. Then, finally, we see the protagonist go outdoors, first in the city, then in the countryside. Here, too, her body moves in order to show us as fully as possible the environments in which she finds herself. Meanwhile, her colleague Hermann Hendrich films her during this ‘experiment’.
The real ‘twist’ of Adjunct Dislocations, however, is yet to come. And this happens a few minutes before the end, when we see the images shot by all three cameras projected onto the screen at the same time. All three points of view are finally shown to us together. Objective and subjective, therefore, immediately become the absolute protagonists. Cinema has the task of showing us the reality around us. But to what extent can we get a comprehensive and truthful picture of it?
And so, in Adjunct Dislocations, VALIE EXPORT wants us to think about how the reality we perceive can change from time to time depending on the point of view from which it is shown to us. The human body (and, in this case, precisely the figure of the filmmaker) becomes a simple means of transmitting something greater to us. ‘Expanded cinema’ in one of its purest forms. And it is precisely of expanded cinema, of her ‘Expanded Cinema’, that VALIE EXPORT has made one of her workhorses. A cinema that knows no limits or rules, which is often not limited to the space of the film screen, but which, at times, can also involve us in the first person (just think, for example, of the famous performance documented in Touch Cinema, made in 1968), making us live true visual and auditory experiences that are each time different depending on what surrounds us, on how we are, on how we feel.
Original title: Adjungierte Dislokationen
Directed by: VALIE EXPORT
Country/year: Austria / 1973
Running time: 10’
Cast: VALIE EXPORT
Screenplay: VALIE EXPORT
Cinematography: Hermann Hendrich
Produced by: VALIE EXPORT Filmproduktion