ELEANOR - ARTIST
*Warning* Potentially Shocking Content.
My piece evokes a surreal cyclical dialogue that is highly sensory, eliciting an emotional response of unease and disgust. The ‘world’ depicted is familiar but does not have the same ‘rules’, it consists of monstrous portals that disregard boundaries, blurring fantasy and reality, inanimate with animate.
Live action and stop motion animation are combined, creating a hybrid audio-visual experience, projected on a large scale - intensely visceral, raw and emotive. I was inspired by Freud’s essay The Uncanny (1919) which helped me to comprehend my childhood anxieties towards certain subjects, objects and materials. In conjunction with Freud, I drew upon Miller’s The Anatomy of Disgust (1997) recognising how the uncanny can also produce an emotional response of disgust.
The use of the mouth as the main protagonist was primarily influenced by Samuel Beckett’s Not I (1973). Subsequently, the other ‘portals’ in my piece (door and earth hole) mimic the mouth to create a ‘dialogue’. Using inanimate materials such as soil and meat stimulates a haptic emotional sense of disgust (Švankmajer, 2014, p.2). Furthermore, Ken Currie’s Tragic Forms (2014) depicts meat as oversized, influencing me to abstract meat through a large-scale projection.
The concept of ‘unhomely’ (unheimlich) is integral to the piece. The large-scale projection gives the impression of being engulfed by the door ‘portal’, but on entering the house it appears to be outside, blurring the notion of internal and external. This use of ‘portals’ heightens the sense of confusion, eventually being confronted by the main protagonist (mouth). Subsequently, the viewer is expelled before they can make sense of it, disrupting familiar expectations of the home as this ‘world’ appears to reside within, hence unheimlich. To further develop the uncanny the film is on loop with 3 sequential alternate versions of entry and exit to the ‘house’, mimicking the ‘narrative’ dialogue of consumption and expulsion.
I also wanted the film to be set in ‘the moment before darkness’ (twilight) taking influence from Hieronymus Bosch’s depiction of hell’s sky (1490), as well as the dark contrasting tones used in Lynch’s The Grandmother (1970).
First Acts filmmaker Eleanor delves into the psyche of a young girl who can't tell fantasy from reality in her short film Ready Or Not. By combining live action and stop-motion Dolan shows the world through a young girl’s eyes: confusing, disorientating and sometimes scary.