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Nada Gambier - Mechanics of emotion: Spectator

maa 02/12/2013 > vri 06/12/2013

Mechanics of emotion (2013) is a series of video installations: A Portrait, Spectator and The weight of invisible pain.

The project, composed of three independent and yet connected parts, is a study on the different ways that emotions are manifested. The work revolves around questions related to how we deal with each other when verbal communication is absent or problematic, how emotions appear physically through our actions but also in the tiny muscles of our face, how affection, care, frustration, love, anger etc co-exist in us every minute of the day and how these emotions are exposed (voluntarily and not) to our surroundings in complex and often un-controlled ways. Mechanics of emotion is at times a very abstract work and at others a visualization of complex social interactions. The work develops (through the three parts) from a zoom in on Nada’s face to a zoom out on a group of anonymous people, from being rather abstract and physical to having more of a narrative flavor. In the third part the physical presence of a body has been replaced by traces of thoughts and experiences that may or may not be fictional.

In this work Nada Gambier observes the contrast between “fake” (acted) emotions and traces of feeling appearing involuntarily in the face. Spectator consists of silent portraits of volunteers in which acted emotions are juxtaposed with “real” emotions, most often when the awareness of being watched disappears. The volunteers are filmed doing specific tasks in relation to presence (going through a series of acted emotions and set actions) but also in- between tasks, moments when the “actors” forget or don’t know that they are being filmed. In Spectator Nada Gambier wants to reveal how sometimes, if one looks closely, the traces from the past that are left on the surface of our skin speak very loud. Through this work Nada Gambier shares her passion for observing people, their appearance, attitude and actions, trying to grasp that which lies within, almost invisible to the eye.

created by: Nada Gambier assisted by Charlotte Vanden Eynde
production: Action Scénique
with the support of: Vlaamse Gemeenschap, Pianofabriek Kunstenwerkplaats