Close to a New Experience
Behnam Kamrani | Ph.D. in Art Research (A Member of Academic Board, University of Art)
Where is the distinction among short film, video art and performance art? How is it possible to use the actor in opposition to accepted and known rules? What is the relationship between music and its expressive dimension with video images?
These questions are considered big challenges today for those artists who have chosen video art as a medium of expression. Mohammad Parvizi’s recent artwork in Shirin gallery has referred to such questions and made video performance in Iran confront new experiences. What is most apparent and manifest in this work of art is Parvizi’s application of the gallery space. This fact is done in a way that faces the familiar spectator with a new experience, and even cast doubt on the recognition of the space he has got used to. This arrangement starts with the addressee’s entrance to the gallery at the beginning of the stairs. Using display boards in different dimensions and in the direction of the addressee’s view has made visual stations which have the viewer watch for a while in their front. Another new aspect of Parvizi’s work is the dissection or expansion of a video in different places of this exhibition so that the conversation thoughts are changed or remembered from one place to another. It is in fact through such conversations that the observer gradually finds way to the work’s atmosphere. The words of this solo restatement go forth and back between personal and collective aspects intelligently, the same as its fluctuation between a gloomy and natural atmosphere.
By going up and down the stairs and the inner black space of demonstration rooms and also the actress’s restatements (Pegah Ahangarani), the spectator feels a heavy weight which culminates in a definite form in the central space by the white-worn and pending player’s performance. This music changes with the girl’s restatement and the cold which is associated to mind by her face turning to white by snow-storm. In this case the large display board is placed under the white-worn player’s feet and has put forth an unstable state which is tragic too. We can see this scene from up and down and we can say its effect is different every time. .. and we remember and hear: you are crying again. .. no I am not crying. .. my eyes fill with tear when it gets cold. .. . In another place we see chambers like those of prison’s meeting room where in all, except one in the middle, we observe display boards. In the middle chamber the actress (Pegah Ahangarani) encounters visitors directly and it is in fact at this place that the intersection point forms. At last point where we face with a large display board, the girl’s countenance is intimately inviting and receptive. In this way we sometimes confront the player’s hand instead of the actress’s face that can be seen in most of the display boards. It seems as if the emotional dimension of the countenance with music reminding and the player’s hands movement is transferred to her this time. It seems Parvizi’s admirable attempt is placed in a new experience of Iran video art. This new aspect, in my opinion, is formed not only from the details, restatements or the actress and the player he has chosen, but also the generality of the play and its dissection by the display board and also the innovative utilization of space. Using live music and a famous actress is a risk taken by the artist. Although he attracts more people by this, he may reduce the pure expressiveness of the work and directs it to the actress’s former plays and music performances. But Parvizi, by conscious appointing and placing the display boards and the imposition of a hallway-like space, has defamiliarized these known effects for the spectators. The simultaneity of cold and snowfall in winter and the cold and gloomy atmosphere have intensified its influence. Another important matter in the creation process of this work is motivating financial sponsors that can be undoubtedly a new base for similar supports. Because such an artistic medium has not been much observed by investors and buyers, and this work of art can be regarded as a good instance for this cooperation.
Mohammad Parvizi’s work is undoubtedly a memorable one in experience with video, demonstration atmosphere and different aspects mentioned before: a work of art which is most influential in the right place and time for demonstration. By presenting this work he omits borders among theater, live music, performance, cinema and video installation and put them in interaction and this alone shows the pensive and innovative aspects of the work: aspects which are different experiences for everyone from near and will be spectacular.