The ArtCat calendar is closed as of December 31, 2012. Please visit Filterizer for art recommendations.


Keren Cytter

Thierry Goldberg Projects
5 Rivington Street, 212-967-2260
East Village / Lower East Side
January 9 - February 22, 2009
Web Site

Thierry Golderg Projects is proud to present Les Ruissellements du Diable, the second solo exhibition of new videos by Keren Cytter. The two videos shown, titled G for Murder and Les Ruissellements du Diable, loop in Cytter’s signature disorientation of narration, plot, and character. Cytter’s work would be best described as kitchen-sink existentialism, where the deconstruction of the language of cinema as we know it mirrors one’s coming to terms with contemporary life.

Cytter’s worlds infinitely unfold as one may wander through the pages of Julio Cortázar’s work. The complex branching of his stories is a primary inspiration for her open-ended non-linear approach to video. Her video, Les Ruissellements du Diable (The Devil’s Streams), refers to Cortázar’s story, Las Babas del Diablo (The Droolings of the Devil). Cytter’s video, trails a photographer chasing an infatuation through the reality of a photograph. Via emotional projection, the photograph and the TV screen are his sole connection to Michélle, a translator on television. Both characters eventually realize they do not actually exist while the empty nature of the photograph remains. Softer than her usual approach, Cytter’s solitary focus in The Devil’s Streams complements the mood of the Asian music throughout the film allowing scenes, characters, gender, and stories to seamlessly collide.

The title of the second video, G for Murder, alludes to Alfred Hitchcock’s Dial M for Murder. The 1954 film follows the story of a man who is plotting to kill his wife. In Cytter’s video, a man is stalking his pregnant neighbor and falls in love with her. He is writing her a love letter but decides not to send it. Cytter makes use of Japanese text throughout the film as a means to explain the plot: “He sees her everyday sitting next to the table and gazing at the wall. He feels close to her and at this point he realizes he loves her and his emotions are taking over his mind.” The man’s obsession with his neighbor grows out of control, and all the while a pair of droog-like punks from A Clockwork Orange or the more recent Funny Games try to prevent the unthinkable. They represent the man’s conscience, which he manages to escape on his way to kill the neighbor.

In appropriation of titles, storylines, clichés and genres, Cytter actively takes part in what she believes to be the by-products of the culture of the spectacle. Re-presented through her poly-vocal and deconstructed approach to cinema, the stories and conventions she alters find a new relevance to contemporary times. In a recent Tema Celeste interview with Marinella Paderni, Cytter relates, “I can’t criticize the society of the spectacle . . . [it] involves everyone who lives in the present. If one doesn’t relate himself to the spectacle, he probably doesn’t exist. From Jesus to Joyce—I believe—it is all spectacle.” By choosing to participate in and relate to the spectacle one makes the decision to be. Under this condition, the exhibition brackets G for Murder and Les Ruissellements du Diable with the longing to break out of the internal world, the mind, and participate / connect with the external, reality, all to find it just as empty.

Keren Cytter (b. Israel, 1977) currently lives and works in Berlin. Her work has been exhibited in numerous museums, art-centers, and international biennials. Upcoming exhibitions featuring Cytter’s work include “Making Worlds,” the 53rd Venice Biennial, Italy, and “The Generational: Younger than Jesus,” the New Museum Triennial, New York, NY. Recent shows featuring her work include “Television Delivers People” at The Whitney Museum in New York; “50 moons of Saturn,” the second Turin Triennial, Italy; The Yokohama Triennial, Japan; “Open Plan Living,” Art TLV, Tel Aviv, Israel; Manifesta 7, Trentino, South-Tyrol, Italy; The second Moscow Biennial, in Russia; and “The History of a Decade That Has Not Yet Been Named,” the Lyon Biennial, France.
Have photos of this show? Tag them with artcal-8730 to see them here.