Video installation composed of 7 pieces  as shown at the Stedelijk Museum Buereau, Amsterdam 2003. 

Video still from BOX part from Tryptich "Hankerchief, Water Box".

The Enigmatic Visitor, double projection, Duration: 17 min on loop.

Based on a an episode of  "Los Lanzallamas" a novel by Roberto Arlt.

 
Link to Catalogue of the exhibition at  the Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amstedamhttp://www.smba.nl/en/exhibitions/in-a-not-so-distant-future/http://www.smba.nl/en/exhibitions/in-a-not-so-distant-future/shapeimage_3_link_0

Force

 

                                                                                                                                                     Text by Wim Peeters



       Water, Box, Handkerchief, Dress/Undress and Force are five productions from 2003 which together with The Enigmatic Visitor (2003, 17 min.) complete the serie In a Not So Distant Future. The semi-documentary style of 15.000.000 Parachutes and Persecution of the White Car are stripped of their referential functions and traded in for autonomous video images edited into loops. The five tableaux confront us with sometimes absurd, but mainly existential themes. We find ourselves back in Patagonia where Paralelo 46° had already been featured earlier on, but in contrast to the futuristic archaeology that Paralelo 46° proposed as a dystopic nod to the present, in Water, Box, Handkerchief, Dress/Undress and Force the contextual space dissolves in a vacuum. We encounter two people with only a couple of props (a box, a handkerchief and sundry garments) fighting against an invisible factor: the wind. With the purified form the five scenes allow for Diaz Morales to achieve the concentrated eloquence and visual power of the Japanese Haiku: a woman is crying, standing in the midst of an arid steppe landscape, a man beside her. The wind wails unstoppably. To dry the woman's tears, the man gets out a handkerchief but a powerful gust of wind tears it from his fingers, leaving it fluttering in a bush further away. The man frees the handkerchief but pricks his finger on a thorn and winds the handkerchief around his finger to stem the blood. The tears and the wound, the blood and the tears and the wind and the thorns overlap in a ceaseless concentration of meanings (Handkerchief, 2003).


Apart from the formal differences, the series of five films is expanding on Diaz Morales' earlier productions taking the degré zéro of human existence yet a step further. The threat that in previous films was inextricably bound up with a socio-cultural background is constricted to an elementary play of forces in an apart from that undefined landscape. From now on we must imagine a world without familiar landmarks. Man as the god of prosthesis in Sigmund Freud's "Civilisation and its Discontents" (1930) is, even without his mechanical aids, no longer the wellhead of an oceanic feeling and all he can do is attempt to survive his own historical condition. For the exhibition the five scenes are complemented by The Enigmatic Visitor, a panoramic recording of a dialogue between a soldier and a scientist - for the dialogue, Diaz Morales again returns to the work of Roberto Arlt. The two strike up a conversation about chemical gases in an abandoned radio station. In the war the soldier had felt the impact of the gas and the scientist wants to build a chemical plant for large-scale gas production. Now and then the image is being interrupted. A huge magnetic field in the radio station cellar sucked down pixels during filming and the optical disruptions seem to prelude the disintegration of the image or our eyesight.