Performer / Audience / Mirror

1975 | 00:22:45 | United States | English | B&W | Mono

Collection: Single Titles

Tags: Documentation, Performance

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In Performer/Audience/Mirror, Graham uses video to document an investigation into perception and real time informational "feedback." The performance is doubly reflected back to the audience by the artist's lecturing, and the architectural device of a mirrored wall. Graham has written extensively on how video, which can deliver information in real time, functions semiotically as a mirror. Using the mirror at the back of the stage as a monitor, Graham voices his unrehearsed observations, activating the various feedback cycles taking place within himself as performer, between the performer and audience, and among audience members. Issues of duration and attention are critical for both performer and audience. "Through the use of the mirror, the audience is able to instantaneously perceive itself as a public mass (as a unity), offsetting its definition by the performer(‘s discourse). The audience sees itself reflected by the mirror instantly, while the performer’s comments are slightly delayed. First, a person in the audience sees himself "objectively" ("subjectively") perceived by himself, next he hears himself described "objectively" ("subjectively") in terms of the performer’s perception.

—Dan Graham (Zippay, 1991)

This title is only available on Surveying the First Decade: Volume 1.