International Tourism, Staging Real Life is an exhibition comprising three films by Marie Voignier, in which she documents controlled and manipulated life events, whether it’s the after effect of a crisis, the simple routines of an abusive power or the persistent imaginary of colonialism.
The show is titled after one of her films, emphasizing the artist’s critique of commercial and ideological spectacles. The critical aspect highlights the political dimension of Voignier’s work, who adopts a discrete and constant approach and produces according to the rhythm of her research, thus avoiding a discourse around what she presents.
In these three films, we encounter a form of restraint and a quietness in the flow of images that allow Voignier to establish a relationship of exteriority to the events that she attends and observes. The artist subtly imposes this distance by filming the behind the scenes and sidelines of the events as if to avoid climactic effects in her editing process. Openly positioned as a conscious spectator, Voignier does not cast judgment nor does she substitute discourse with the real.
In International Tourism Voignier records in a paradoxical way a long-term spectacle produced on the scale of a whole country, North Korea. Standing Still unpacks accounts of hunting guides and what they retain from colonial discourse. Hearing the Shape of a Drum documents the construction of a large-scale trial whose main actor, an incestuous abuser, manages to stay invisible. A crowd of reporters, tasked to produce material for television channels across the world, end up creating almost fictional and authoritarian images and commentaries instead of inventing new ways of telling the story.
International Tourism (Tourisme International), 48 min, 2014 Production Bonjour Cinéma & CAC Bretigny
Standing Still (Les Immobiles), 14 min, 2013
Hearing the shape of a drum, 17 min, 2010 Production 6. Berlin Biennal & CAC Bretigny
thanks to SCAC, the French embassy in Lebanon.