Extra Credit- Douglas Gordon (related to reproduction in contemporary art)

This is Douglas Gordon and he is an active participant in our contemporary art world today!  One particular work that he created that I personally found intriguing and thought you all might as well is “24 Hour Psycho”.  This work was a video instillation of the movie “Psycho” by Alfred Hitchcock, played over the time frame of one whole day.  It shows that it was a movie that he must have watched a lot, or truly was obsessed with considering he wanted to pull out deeper meaning in it by creating his own work of art out of it.

Gordon once said, “The original work is a masterpiece in its own right, and I’ve always loved to watch it. … I wanted to maintain the authorship of Hitchcock so that when an audience would see my 24 Hour Psycho they would think much more about Hitchcock and much less, or not at all, about me…” So in a way it also portrays Gordon’s lack of identity in the piece.  By strictly drawing the audience’s attention towards the original moviemaker, it takes away from his name being visible in the work.  But because his name is semi-present, it leads me to question his identity and why he would stretch out this psycho movie to 24 hours.  It leads me to believe that he considers part of his identity to be that of a psycho.  Throughout the semester we have learned that many contemporary artists today use this technique of taking works by other artists from history or from different forms of artists such a celebrities, and reinterpreting them in a new and unique way.  Gordon does this through the “Psycho” piece in that he changes its context.  It makes me feel as if today, all throughout society there are in fact, people who are characteristic of psychos and that they are all around us on a day-to-day basis.  This idea does make sense when thinking about all the murderers, sex offenders, and mentally unstable nut-cases that are shown on the news.

I personally hate scary movies, but I find this artwork to be a fascinating idea in terms of process.  In this work, a large mirror reflects the video back at itself, which creates a type of spatial illusion around the viewer.  In lecture, we’ve learned a lot about how people in general try to see artworks and just things in general as clear as possible.  Seeing things clearly makes them feel comfortable with what is being processed in their vision as well as what they are interpreting from it.  So seeing this video sort of in reverse in terms of the mirror, as well as not completely clear, it creates a sense of instability among the viewer.  Especially in Gordon’s work “Fog” which went along with “24 Hour Psycho”, The shadow of the man in the video is projected on the other side of the screen out of sync which makes it seem like he is looking at himself looking at looking at his own shadow.  I think this out of body experience is a beautiful and captivating concept that truly questions ones own identity.  Viewing this artwork as well as the other artworks that we spoke of in class that focus around the out of body experience, truly makes me want to capture the essence of such works and the feelings they instill.



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