still from Erysichthon, (2015)
full HD video, 8:03
This is a still from a new video by Canadian artist JON RAFMAN that is currently part of the exhibition Field Vision along with German artist CHRISTIAN JANKOWSKI. I saw the piece, called Erysichthon (2015), during gallery weekend in Berlin at Future Gallery which presents, through this duo exhibition, a selection of videos and images that engage the relationship between vision and comprehension as well as image and experience.
Erysichthon (2015) is a eight-minute single-channel video featuring a both fascinating and apocalyptic imagery made of appropriated footage from the web. The video is presented in a kind of DIY plywood box which isolates you completely from the gallery environment. I have read that RAFMAN was interested into the idea of ‘troll caves’, which are the rooms inhabited by gamers during excessive hours in virtual reality. For the artist these spaces are at ‘once abject and sublime, revealing the material residue of a life completely dedicated to an online existence, and they point to the impossibility of total escape from physical reality’*. This piece – as well as RAFMAN‘s previous works – seems to use the media against itself to have it be entertaining and critical at once.
A very short excerpt of the video is available on the wfw instagram. Of course, the image above and the short excerpt don’t do justice to RAFMAN‘s work, so make sure to view the exhibition in person before it closes on June 13, 2015 at Future Gallery in Berlin.