Madelyne Beckles and Delilah Rosier begin their one week residency tomorrow at the Gladstone Art Hut. “Masking The Feature Film,” will explore the dichotomy between the pleasurable and problematic existing in today’s pop culture. The pair will insert themselves into film parodies of competition, dating show and documentary style reality television all of which will be documented and unveiled on Saturday April 15th. See what they had to say about their upcoming project below!
Where did the idea for ‘Masking: the Feature Film’ come from?
In our first show “Masking is Always More Fun With a Friend” we created a temporal and site specific exhibition, so with this feature film we intend to take some of our explorations to the next level. As best friends and collaborators, we bond over pop culture obscurities, that are fundamental to our ideologies and art making practices. Our work functions to reveal ugly truths of the world in a sexy way; one that is inherently abject in nature. We also bond and get off on humour hidden in that which is absurd, so what better to look at than pop culture! With a feature film, we were excited by the idea of having a concrete work as a time capsule, and as reality TV and pop culture becomes so easily dated, we wanted to make a work that will be contemporary only for a hot second.
Will the performances be improvised?
Within the space, we intend to document our movements and actions as “an investigation of the theatre of everyday life” as well as function as intentional satire. The performances will be totally improvised in theory, however we will be directly parodying tropes that are omnipresent in reality television such as character intros and post production interviews which are seen in the real housewives series, prize montages which can be seen in Rupaul’s Drag Race, America’s Next Top Model, and Project Runway, and commercials that are screened in conjunction with these shows (to name a few). We don’t have a script but we will be faithful to the formatting of these shows in order to create a successful parody.
What are some of your favourite pop culture and reality tv show trends right now?
Clownish music and sound effects used to fill that boring void, miscommunication, or non-communication as plot drivers. I think we are apprehensive to call these trends, but within these tropes lies a melancholy that embodies this notion of the simultaneously “pleasurable and problematic.” Faves of pop culture at the moment would include, spin-off culture, Bonne apple tea, and Real Housewives of Toronto that includes all the tacky drama with an injection of hoser-y can-con.
Is there pop culture that exists without the exploitive aspects and stereotypical roles? Can the “pleasurable and problematic” be separated from one another?
Culture in general exist with exploitive aspects and typical roles. We see reality tv as a mirror to society, and its incongruity. This is also dependant on the role and perspective of the participant, for, they can determine whether they were being exploited, or see it as an advantage for their branding and TV persona. Regardless if it is possible to separate the two, as viewers and artists, we don’t think we can for they are integral to our criticism and POV.
Furthermore, “Masking the Feature Film” will work as a tangible Art object that corresponds to our theory of “Heckle-core”. We will work to create a manifesto that will counteract the autocracy of performance; and strives to extend upon the practice of disidentification. The viewer functions as participant, heightening the level of joy for all involved; though here there are two separate aspects of a performance, working in tandem. The viewer can engage in critique that extend beyond the object to be consumed and work to deconstruct structures of society which we view as a mode of reparative practice.
Exhibition Dates: April 11 – 16, 2017
Reception + Screening: Sat, April 15, 2017
Facebook Event: bit.ly/2nUr4SQ