Once More is a provocation regarding the nature of live performance and documentation.
The five-channel video has the appearance of a small incidental scene from a 1960s sitcom that is looped continually. Contrary to appearances, the five-channel video documents a continuous performance: a series of events that are repeated again and again, over the 107 minute duration. The length of the performance was determined by the recording capacity of the cameras. The videos include a fade in and out between the appearances of each character. These fades have the appearance of post-production edits, but were created through the use of physical lights, with dimming control, captured in-camera. In other words, the work appears to be a brief looped section (approximately three minutes in duration), but is actually the documentation of a single performance where the same two scenes are continuously repeated until the camera disks are full.
The two characters are played by the artist (myself), which required constant costume changes. This occurs in real-time during the fading of the lights. The goal was to keep each repeated action the same, however it was inevitable that I would falter from time to time, revealing the methods of the work’s construction. Furthermore, the debris left on the floor of the custom built set, from the celery, functions as a persistent clue to the nature of the work as performance documentation, rather than a looped video.
The videos replicate the aesthetic of 1960s sitcoms, which were often performed on sound stages to a live audience. These sitcoms are known as “multi-camera” because they consist of a single live performance that has been recorded using multiple cameras, the footage from which is edited back into a single channel for broadcast. Multi-camera programs are distinct from cinema and more elaborate single- camera television productions, which rely on multiple takes that are used to construct single actions through the editing process. This film and television industry standard provides the context for an exploration of the relationship between live performance and a performance constructed through moving image media.
Once More uses popular forms as an alternative language through which to reflect upon, critique and to explore themes central to the history of feminist performance art, including authenticity, presence, the construction of feminine archetypes, failure, and endurance.