Video Artist Greg Barth Composes 'Essays On Reality' with Physical Effects
Influenced by the existentialist and surrealist movements, designer turned director Greg Barth’s ongoing series of video art installations Essays On Reality draws inspiration from the global economic and social-political events which shape our lives. The first two chapters from the series tackle these larger event from the point of view of “the american idiot” and “Generation Y” respectively:
Personally, when it comes to engaging beyond the surface level of appreciating the visuals, I can sometimes find the meanings and intentions of experimental and video art based films particularly opaque. Perhaps that’s something Barth has experienced himself and therefore spurred him on to clearly set out the concept and aims of Essays On Reality:
Each chapter is depicted as a caricature of its theme, which is then separated into three essays.
Accordingly, each theme asks three questions:
1) Who is the subject
2) What are his/her habits and lifestyle
3) How he/she perceives the world
The abstract nature of the compositions in the series feel like a natural playground for the use of digital effects, but Barth prefers to employ physical solutions to the visual tricks required for the films:
I like working with real materials, people and physical sets. It’s much more fun and challenging, but it also gives a texture and feel that is impossible to simulate in CG.
As well as walking through some of the production techniques used in Chapter II of Essays On Reality, the following making of video further explains the concepts explored in the film, as do the notes on the Essays On Reality website.
How successfully do you think Essays On Reality conveys its concepts? Is experimental/art filmmaking an area you’ve explored in your own work?
Link: Greg Barth
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