|Oliver Luker (Dispatx) on Wed, 14 Nov 2007 09:41:07 +0100 (CET)|
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|<nettime-ann> New Work from Emanuel Licha at dispatx.com|
Dispatx Art Collective is pleased to announce a
further addition to the Eminent Domain collection currently published in Show:
Emanuel Licha's It's Like Being in a Movie. This project,
developed online in Make, explores the ritual systemisation of violence
and destruction, particularly through modern media. The assumed persona of the War
Tourist is an amorphous spokesperson for the unsettling combination of war,
disaster and tourism, a coupling of event and response that is tied with a
drive for sensational imagery and compartmentalisation of global problems. The
presence of this freewheeling persona is suitably complex, and its curiosity
and hunger for destruction are often couched in a jovial, innocent manner, with
a near childlike emphasis on the motives that he is frank enough to admit to.
The central concerns around the theme of Eminent
Domain, focusing on various explorations of
obstacle and negotiation throughout a creative method, strikes immediate
and unsettling chords in the War Tourist's own inevitable progression.
His desire to assume control over the chaos he seeks leads him to invent and
construct war zones - and even spurious reasons for entering into one - further
ensuring that such events are happening in places that he can master and profit
by without threatening the security of his home.
Emanuel's project, charting the War Tourist's
growing "disillusionment" with his virtual environments and the desire to
reintroduce his fabrications into the real world, has employed various
techniques and conceits in its development including evidence of shifting
control between authors and the fabrication of material. These methods have been
used to compose a layered body of material that effectively and amusingly
questions the gap between tongue and cheek. Its culmination - a qualified,
somewhat ambiguous communiqué redirecting his destructive focus onto a figure
of potential support in his campaign - seems an apparent, though pointedly
uncertain, gesture of renunciation.
This signing-off report from the War Tourist is a fitting conclusion to the project's unruly positioning somewhere between farce and seriousness. Ultimately, the work manages to circumvent all manner of distancing affects to approach a stark encounter with the absurdity of events, broaching immediate and challenging implications for political and ethical responsibility, whether set up via 'thrown voices' or in elaborate fabrications ready to be destroyed.
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