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Monika Weiss
Ennoia
2002
Cast-concrete vessel, water, artist's body, underwater microphone, video projection, sound

Size Variable


Diapason
From the series: Vessels

6-hour immersion; sound in collaboration with Stephen Vitiello

From Greek "concept" and "thought in mind," Ennoia was inspired by my reading of Gnostic texts. It is the edge of light that collapsed into this world, into flesh.

Curled-up inside the vessel, echoing its interior shape, I lie almost motionless. The vessel is shaped like an octagonal chalice, reminiscent of a medieval baptismal font and filled with water. During the several-hour performance I move slowly along the inner walls of the vessel. From time to time I emerge from and submerge into the water. Sounds of the immersion are picked up by underwater microphones installed in the basin. I repeat the performance on several different days throughout the time of the installation.

Suspended perpendicularly to the basin from the ceiling, a video camera films my body immersed in water. This "bird’s eye" view  is projected onto the wall just beyond the basin, translating the view from above into a flat, painterly representation. A reflection of the projection can be seen on the surface of water. At times I look directly at the camera’s lens, and the viewer may see my gaze in the projected image. The image itself is composed of live and pre-recorded footage, creating a visual tension with the presence of my body and the virtual depiction of an earlier act of immersion. As I remain in the water-filled vessel, the uninterrupted video projection (the image of my immersed body) appears more "real" then my live body.





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