Beethoven vs Chopin (2015)



My Pink City (2014)




Diego Garcia (2010)



A Ray of Sunshine (2008)





'The City / Game 1' (2007)

 

A little film (2005)




10.34 AM (2005)

 

 

Tokyo Tonight (2003)

the day that left (2002)



Beethoven vs Chopin, Video Still, 2015

Beethoven vs Chopin

Video Collage - DV Pal - colour & b/w - stereo sound - 3 mins – 2015
(A collaboration with Fatma Ciftci funded by the Artists’ International Development Fund, UK)

Beethoven vs Chopin is a short film collage constructed out of fragments of two films that share the same plot: To pio labro asteri (The most bright star), a musical produced in Greece in 1967, which was transformed into a romance, entitled Kara goslum (The black eyed one) and produced in Turkey in 1970. The two films are juxtaposed with a third film, Some Like it Hot, a comedy produced in Hollywood in 1959.

Although the Greek and Turkish films are led by two strong female stars that highlight the position of the working woman active in the pubic sphere, the short collage film focuses instead on their male protagonists that go by the nicknames of Beethoven and Chopin. In an attempt to avoid deconstructing once again the way the female body has been represented in popular cinema, Beethoven VS Chopin is concerned with a questioning of gender relationships through the exploration of masculinity from the point of view of two female artists..

Taking as a starting point a scene of masquerade, the male stars of the Greek and Turkish films are brought together through a dialogue with the cross-dressing plot in Some Like it Hot. Following the song, ‘I want to be loved by you’ that becomes the motor for the linking of lives, geographies and cultures, the two films are metamorphosed into a new one, which with a touch of irony questions the fluidity of gender positions, the construction of national identities and the relation between modernity and tradition.

Bethoven VS Chopin is a result of a collaboratively research process undertaken by visual artists Aikaterini Gegisian and Fatma Ciftci and the choice of films reflects their respective cultural backgrounds of Greek/Armenian and Turkish heritage.


Beethoven vs Chopin, Video Stills, 2015

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My Pink City,
Video Still, 2014

My Pink City

2014 - 48 mins - col & b/w - stereo sound - HD
(Shot on location in Yerevan, Armenia bewteen 2010 & 2012)


My Pink City is an essay film set in Yerevan, Armenia that explores the production of urban and cinematic space by employing documentary, taxonomical, narrative and surrealist imaginations. Taking as its starting point a female subjective position the film explores the narrative of post-Soviet transition, the militarisation of public space and the gendered divisions in the experience of the city. Constructed as a gap between the space of the city and the space of the film, it is composed of diverse layers of visual and sound material, ranging from archive sources, found footage, footage filmed through television sets, voice-over narrations, music and location sound.

The film isolates the moment of the post-Soviet transformation of Yerevan as a strategy for reflecting on the construction and consumption of urban and cinematic space as conditions of both Soviet and capitalist modernity. In a continuous search for moments of active spatial cinematic consciousness, the film finally expresses its failure to control and measure both the space of the city and its own topography.



My Pink City, Video Stills, 2014

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Diego Garcia, Video Still, 2010

Diego Garcia

2010 – 16 mins – stereo sound – DigiBeta/DVD
(Shot in DVCAM in Mauritius in April 2009)


Diego Garcia is an artist's documentary, which looks at the deportation of the inhabitants of the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean (now the site of one of the biggest American military bases in the world) by the British Government to Mauritius. The film juxtaposes text extracts from the Chagossian's High Court testimonies, which collectively portray the islands as a paradise lost, with a camera that continuously wanders in the Mauritian landscape. These testimonies become the starting point for looking at Mauritius and the Indian Ocean as a complex set of relationships and act as catalysts in unravelling the hidden traces of history inscribed in spaces.

The film takes the form of a journey where landscape becomes the central character. Blending different narrative voices, such as the collective voice of the testimonies, the observa- tional eye of the artist with ambient voices and sounds, the film comments on shifting geographies, on the myth of paradise and on the ways we inhabit a globalised world.

Diego Garcia, Video Stills, 2010

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A Ray of Sunshine, Video Stills, 2008


A Ray of Sunshine

2008 - 1 min - stereo sound - DV
(shot in miniDV in Armenia in 2006)

A Ray of Sunshine is based on footage shot in the area of Lake Sevan in Armenia around a derelict hotel that was abandoned when the Soviet Union collapsed.  Starting from an almost black screen, the image slowly opens up to reveal an ambiguous landscape, while the sound transports us to a different perceptual space. Using colour and sound, the work questions the realities of the recorded image in an attempt to inscribe the personal in a continuously changing landscape.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian

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Passengers, Video Stills, 2007

Passengers

2007 – 13 mins 37 secs – stereo sound – DigiBeta/DVD
(Shot in miniDV in Thessaloniki, Greece in May 2007)

Passengers was filmed in Nicopolis, a newly built shantytown area in the city of Thessaloniki, Greece and focuses on an immigrant community of Greek-Pontiac descent (originally from the coast of the Black Sea in Turkey) that came to the city from Kazakhstan in the beginning of the nineties.

The film begins with a static view of the area from above and follows a woman walking in the distance. It then concentrates on the stories narrated by the com- munity about their experiences of exile within the So- viet Union, about coming to Greece and the difficulties they faced trying to set up a new life. Their stories are told as a voice-over juxtaposed over tracking shots of deserted derelict trains and of their neighbourhood streets.

Continuously circulating their houses and yards, while devoid of their presence (as you can only hear them), the film questions documentary conventions (to identify the truth in the face of the narrator), but crucially its trapped movement (fixed in an endeless circle) reflects the shuttering of their nostalgic homecoming. The film uses documentary modes but it does not try to identify, classify, indexify or justify the existence and the spaces created by the community. The image is what grounds us to a specific reality while the fragmented voice-over populates the spaces and tries to deny its role as an explanation of images.

The film was produced in the International Workshop for Young Artists (May 2007) a Parallel Program of the 1st Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art: “Hetrotopias”.

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'The City / Game 1'
, Video Stills, 2007

'The City / Game 1'

2007 - 2 mins - stereo sound - DV
(Shot in miniDV in Athens in 2007)


The emblematic centre of Athens, Monastiraki, becomes the terrain for the acting out of a somehow sinister childish game – the collection of cigarettes butts from the dirty pavements. As the lonely performer arranges the butts on the floor seemingly unaware of the actual city surrounding her, the melancholic narration of the poem ‘City’ by C.P. Cavafy points to another internal city, to the conflicts within. The butts on the floor are both traces of our futile interventions and of the boarders we create. Poem sourced from the book C.P. Cavafy ‘154 Poems’ translated by Evangelos Sachperoglou, Athens, 2003.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian
Commissioned for Karaoke Poetry Bar presented by Intothepill.net with the support of the 1st Biennale of Athens, November 2007

 

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The image unfolded, Video Stills, 2007

The image unfolded

2007 - 5 mins 38 secs - no sound - DV
(shot in Various Locations in mini DV, between 2003 and 2007)

The image unfolded is based on an original text piece, created in 2005, which was generated from words collected from the walls of my studio, in an attempt to create an inventory of my practice. The text produced through this process is intercut, in the final video work, with fragments of footage shot in journeys in Greece, Turkey and Armenia. Based on the repetition of the words ‘image’ and its ‘unfolding’, the work explores the nature of memory and documents the gaps between images, sounds and sentences.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian


The image unfolded, Video Stills, 2007

 

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A little film, Video Stills, 2007

A little film

2005 - 5 mins - stereo sound - DV
(Shot in various location in miniDV, between 2003 and 2005)


A little film
is divided in three parts, each composed by a single shot of a landscape that comes slowly into focus. The parts are respectively titled: for happiness and loss, for love and allusion, for remembering and forgetting.The film explores the idea of a crescendo between image and sound - image and sound moving in and out of each other. A female character reflects on the landscape and wonders between the actual and the remembered, the personal and the imaginary. The film is a comment on the passage of time and the way framing, perspective and vision constructs both space and our way of inhabiting it. The focussing of image and sound becomes a metaphor alluding to the very process of an image’s creation.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian


 

 

 

10.34 AM, 2006

10.34 AM

2006 - 3 mins 30 secs - DV
(Shot in Thessaloniki, Greece in miniDV in 2005)

10.34 AM is the third part of a trilogy of films that examines how the digital scrolling of images affects perception and narrative. It is set in a supermarket, the time is 10.35 am. It follows the movements of an invisible female character as she goes about her daily activities. The supermarket shelves scroll continuously becoming the screens that reflect her various emotional states.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian

 

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Tokyo Tonight, 2003

Tokyo Tonight

2003 - 4 mins 30 secs - stereo sound - DV
(Shot in Hastings, UK in miniDV in 2002)

Tokyo Tonight is the second part of a trilogy of films that examine how the digital scrolling of images affects perception and narrative. The film takes as its starting point the image of a train passing in front of a static camera. This is juxtaposed to a layered soundtrack of ambient sounds and a contemplative voice-over of three characters speaking in different languages. Their reflections move our attention from the inside of the train to the image of looking at it passing by. The film explores how one image can lead us to a myriad little narratives and how sound can lead us to other images.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian


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the day that left,
2002


the day that left

2002 - 6 mins 30 secs - stereo sound - DV
(Shot in Greece and Uk in miniDV in 2002)

The day that left is the first part of a trilogy of films that examine how the digital scrolling of images affects perception and narrative. A static camera frames two distinct windows, in two different countries (Greece and England) in the course of one autumn day. A voice-over of the same female character alternates between the two languages and between different subjective positions. The landscape beyond the window becomes a reference that points to other spaces and experiences. The film explores how the process of observation may produce spaces that might refer to the ‘real’ but are nonetheless ‘constructed’.

Direction, Production, Camera, Editing and Sound - Aikaterini Gegisian

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