jay rechsteiner


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monoloqueArt - ENCOUNTERS

The initial concept of monolqueArt was an on-going exploration of artistic practice and practitioners in the form of intimide and personal encounters with artists, focusing mainly on the person behind the portrayed artist rather than what is usually written in catalogues, book etc. about the artist. However, during the process of working on monoloqueArt a much more important aspect / element has appeared: a deeply moving encounter between the artist (subject, volunteer) and myself filming the monologue with up to four cameras. The significance of the project lies in a simple (and probably a bit pathetic) message relating to the importance of getting to know one another in order to understand and hence accept, love. In my personal experience I have come to love some of the art works that I did not much care about before the encounter. I think such intensive encounters help to connect to one another. It is a small start, a drop in the sea of maybe a better world or a an idea of a better world. (Now please... I know this sounds pathetic... but I actually believe what I have written here...). In a world in which communication is more and more based on a growing number of social networks, making true and real encounters are becoming a rare commodity.

The project is connected to previous research based projects such as the Washsroom Projects, zeiTraum and the Washroom Talks.

A series/ collecection of video monologues by artists explores the people behind the portrayed artists, the core of their creation and the very reason why they do what they do. Each monoloque is filmed with up to four cameras whereas the quality of each camera is different representing different view points, points of perspective and modes of observation.

Editing the footage is like creating a painting or sculpture. There is a deep process happening, a permenant interplay between conscious and subconscious, intellect and emotion that manifests itself in video monologues. The artist becomes the source for artistic creation whereas the viewer is now in the position of the creator, the artist. I attempt to reverse / change the usual 'one-way dialogue' between the artist/the work and the viewer. Some of the monologues are far too long for a normal audience. I am not trying to create entertainment here (although there needs to be an entertainment value otherwise nobody gives any attention to it) but simply focus on letting the artist talk freely. I am not intervening, just filming.

Important note re the term editing: When I use the word editing, I do not refer to cutting the footage as I want to show everything the subject has to say. Editing refers to put the film together using different footage by different cameras filming the same monologue.

Artist residence in Alloue: monoloqueart_odyssee

monologueArt Odyssee la Maison du Comedian marai Casares, France, Jay Rechsteiner

Footage monologues

Some of the footage is hardly edited and can be longer than the so-called entertainment value allows. It is my objective NOT to intervene too much. A monologue is ideally not longer than ten minutes. However, as I do not want to restrict the artists (the subjects, volunteers), I have decided to keep some of the footage hardly edited (except for the titles). There is an element of anti-mass media entertainment that keeps us zombified as I would like to put it. It is possbile to film more than one monologue per person. Every encounter is different and so is every monologue, every film in terms of length, format and content.

monologues I tend not to edit too much in terms of constructing the monologue using the different footage from different cameras:

When the artist is working on a piece of work while holding a monologue

monologues I tend to edit:

When the artist is NOT working on a piece of work while holding a monologue

Name Practice Country Website
       
Franzueli Rechsteiner sculpture, land art, installation Switzerland web page

personal comment:

Franzueli Rechsteiner is a very special artist in the sense of his profound interest in art and the way he works. However, what fascinates me more than anything else is his openness for new things. He is interested in everything there is, knows how to listen to people, animals, to mother nature and transform whatever there is in a harmonious way that makes nature accept his work.

Walking through the forests in the vicinity of Lugnez where he lives and works is a fantastic adventure - you find yourself on a search and discovery trip as he 'plants' his artistic interventions here and there hidden within bushes, trees, behind wooden benches etc. His work and he himself are present and part of the forests. Sculptures and installations made of wood, stone, wire etc. are amassed in his studios and around his house. The very child within Franzueli is present and playing freely here – the release of one's inner child at will is what some people call genius.

Whether or not you like his work is irrelevant, I think, as the mode and reasons why he does what he does, carries a lot more importance and represents human culture in terms of the continuous progress of work, intervention and adaptation.


documentary-style monologue
April 2012
Franzueli Rechsteiner at work
April 2012
monologue about Land Art
April 2012
monologue about himself
April 2012
 
Chiara Williams sculpture, painting UK http://www.wilsonwilliamsgallery.com/chiara.htm

personal comment:

I believe that Chiara Williams considers herself a feminist artist. I might be wrong though. However, I think you cannot catagorize her as a feminist artist despite the fact that her work seems to play with feminist ideas of beauty and that sort of stuff. No, Chiara is much more, a much bigger artist. Her work is profound and interesting to me. After three monologue sessions I got to know this wonderful artist. She is full of ideas and desire to produce great work. Sometimes though, I think she could do more, a lot more. Her talent and artistic sense is magnetic, draws me to her. I love the subtlety and poetic element of her work. Yes, it is the work of a woman. No doubt. I personally needed our filming sessions to get to know her as an artist, the artist behind the director of WW Gallery. I must admit I was not sure about her work before but this was due to my own ignorance.I see greatness and true poetic beauty in her work.


Chiara Williams at work
April 2013
monologue part 1
April 2013
monologue part 2 & 3
April 2013
monologue in park with T-Bone
April 2013
 
Enzo Marra painting UK http://www.wilsonwilliamsgallery.com/enzo.htm

personal comment:

Enzo Marra is a genius. There is no doubt. I have been following him for a while now. His evolution as an artist and craftsman is phenomenal. I did like his earlier works but what he magically produces nowadays is mind blowing. His work is full of strength and beauty. Wild and free. It is a joy watching him make his own paint. He is so submerged in his practice. Yes, he reminds me of characters such as for example Cézanne.Giotto. He is one of the last romantics. I am not talking about the period here but more about the idea of the romantic artist. I am glad to have met Enzo and feel privileged to have been able to film him. He will certainly be part of the history of art

     
 

Fabrice Pressigout

landart, sclupture

France

n/a

personal comment:

I met Fabrice Pressigout during my residency at la Maison du Comédien Maria Casarès in Allou. He is such a friendly and open-minded artist who has an amazing way of listening and interacting with people and nature from which he seems to get his inspiration from: He listens and then reacts. Similar to Franzueli Rechsteiner's practice Fabrice knows how to integrate his work into a given environment (nature, ideology etc.). He does what he does because he loves creating things, playing with wood, wire, objects, giving them new meaning, a new life. This is his art and this is him. He imagines the world and creates it accordingly. Fabrice is a modest man, doesn't talk too much about himself (unless he is being filmed while working on his bird's nest!). He gives you space to be, to represent yourself. He invites you over to stay with him and is eager to let you inside his life. There are so many treasures to discover in this man's life. I think people naturally like this guy, gather around him. I am very glad to have been able to film him.

Update Monday, 13 May
I filmed Fabrice again today but still have not managed to meet him, the person behind the artist. His monologues do not reveil a lot about himself yet, only about the work, his ideas, philosophy, general opinion of art but not about him, Fabrice. The only time I capture Fabrice behind the artist is when he thinks the monologue is over. I purposely keep the camera running a few seconds - a few seconds means the world.

Update Monday, 20 May
We did four monologues today in Fabrice's studio. At last I managed to capture a more personal Fabrice. He is indeed a versatile artist who uses all sorts of 'stuff' and objects to transform, merge them and create great work. I really, really like his work. He is a ninja in the art world: He makes art out of anything. His imagination is set free in his studio, a kingdom of fantasy where his inner child is free to roam about and go crazy. Lovely work.

un-edited
working on a bird's nest:

(10 May 2013)

monologue 2
(17 May 2013)

monologue 3
(17 May 2013)
monologue 4
(17 May 2013)
       

Pascal Péroteau

musician, composer

France

myspace

personal comment:

Pascal is pure poetry. Our encounter was a profoundly emotional experience. He is truely a great soul with a free spirit and honesty that makes you love mankind. He has great access to nature, animals, people. I find it difficult to describe what happened inside me. After filming five monologues with Pascal I was exhausted, physically and mentally. I needed my bed. His saxophone seems like a portal that allows him to set his soul free. It is bliss listening to him play his instrument and sing or talk works of poetry. Pascal inspired me a lot today. He managed to set something free, something inside me that I have not been able to access until now. I have always tried to be subtle in my work, releasing fine emotions but never managed. I admired artists such as for example Tarek Abu Hageb from Basel whose work is fine, subtle and touching. I believe that I have made a huge progress in my artistic development today thanks to the encounter with Pascal.

monolgue 1
(13 May 2013)
monologue 2
(13 May 2013)
monologue 3
(13 May 2013)
monologue 4
(13 May 2013)
 
monolgue 5
(13 May 2013)
 
 

Laurent Falguieras

performer

France

www.picapoule.org

personal comment:

I wasn't sure about Laurent. I thought he was a bit of a complicated character judging from our phone conversation. When we arrived at CNAR in Niart, he was standing outside in the car park. He looked wild, long hair, toned body and an expressive face. He greeted us friendly and we started filming shortly. He was easy going.

I don't think I have managed to fully encounter, capture him but I did enjoy filming him doing his monologues. He is a very profound artist, someone who uses his full physicality to express, explore and create. This is something I admire very much. Although his presence is very strong, I did not feel intimidated or small. He is power, energy and honesty. He is a volcano. He is a great thinker, I believe who does not feel the need to intellectualize his work, keeps it down-to-earth. Laurent is one of those artists who make me feel good about being an artist myself.

You could feel and see that he was a performing artist. He feels comfortable in front of the camera and talks naturally (although a bit staged). Although I didn't explain much about the project, he seemed to grasp it immediately. A great guy who has a wonderful aura around him.

Looking at his work, the flyers he gave me... I like that sort of stuff. I think he is a fantastic performance artist who deserves a lot of attention which he seems to be getting.

The monologues left me empty and sad. It was a profoundly emotional experience filming this great artist. I was already dead tired after the first one. When I asked Laurent if he wanted to another one, I hoped he would say that he wanted a break and then see but he was keen on another one and another and another one. At the end I needed to lie down and relax, even sleep. It took me a roughly an hour to recover from the encounter. I felt a great joy and was in love with everything around me. I wanted to kiss the old lady crossing the road and cuddle all the dogs on the way home.

I hope to bump into Laurent again one day.

monologue 1
(16 May 2013)
monologue 2
(16 May 2013)
monologue 3
(16 May 2013)
monologue 4
(16 May 2013)
 

Michèle Bouhet &
Jean-Louis Compagnon

story teller
musician

France

website
website

personal comment:

What can I say? Two absolutely beautiful people. Jean-Louis and Michèle are not only very talented artists but also wonderful human beings which obviously reflects in their artistic practice. I didn't need to explain the project in details as they understood where I was coming from and what I was doing. Doing the monologues was very easy with them. It was a joy in fact. As Michele was watching Jean-Louis doing his monologue she was very moved by what he said and then started to talk together which I filmed – a monologue in a dialogue form. The last monologue they did together was a performance – a most wonderful and harmonious spectacle. No rehearsal or talking much about what they were going to do which proves that they are an amazing artistic duo. France must be proud of such children.

This was the first time I did not feel any emptiness or sadness right after the monologues. The impression was subtle but profound and hit me an hour later - I needed a three-hour siesta!

monologue Michèle
(17 May 2013)
monologue Jean-Louis
(17 May 2013)
monologue together (conversation)
(17 May 2013)
performance monologue together
(17 May 2013)
 

Alexandre Blondel

dancer France www.carna.fr/

personal comment:

Alex is a good guy. Very friendly, open and positive and down-to-earth. With a big smile he arrived half an hour too late. After a quick conversation and a small coffee we sat down in the lounge here at La Maison du comédien. The first monologue was mainly about his work as a dancer which was interesting and very positive. He is one of those lucky people who do what they want and make a living with it. The second monologue was about his personal life, his wife and kids.

I am not sure if I managed to capture him to be honest. But then again, I think I didn't need to as he is someone I already know. He reminds me of my cousin Raoul, a good looking chap with a big smile who loves the world.

I enjoyed our encounter. I liked the way he comfortably sat in the chair while playing with his mug and talking.

 
monologue 01
(21 May 2013)
monologue 02
(21 May 2013)

Melle Anna Carraud

actress

France

 

personal comment:

Anna is a very special person who reminds me of a character in a Françoise Sagan novel. She is deeply poetic, profoundly sad and filled with an enormous joy at the same time. I met her during my stay here in Alloue. She was the choreographer of a theatre company that used the residence to put a piece of theatre together. On the second last night of their stay at two in the morning she asked me if she could do a monologue with me. I agreed. We chose the library with the beautiful red wall as the background for her monologue. I can't talk much about her work as an actress as I haven't seen her on stage. I only saw the piece they she choreographed which I did like it a lot. But what I can say is that she is very passionate about theatre and film and seems to have a profound knowledge.

I really enjoyed our monologue although I was tired and a bit drunk. It was a profound experience with a very special person who lives in Paris and talks like someone from a romantic novel.

monologue kept private for the time being
(24 May 2013)

 
 

Philippe Nahon

artistic director of Ars Nova & composer

France

http://www.arsnova-ensemble.com

personal comment:

What a great mind and person. I really enjoyed meeting Philippe. He is a very accomplished artist in his field who has done a lot of collaborative work which I personally like a lot. He is open-minded and down-to-earth.

Although he is super busy he managed to find some time to spend with me doing three monologues in the meeting room of the headquarters of Ars Nova in Poitiers. Meeting people such as Philippe is always rewarding. It makes you feel good and enthusiastic about life. There is a man you can learn from, a man you would proudly like to call a friend. His whole personality radiates greatness, intellect, experience and kindness.

After the monologues we had a coffee in a snack-bar nearby and on my way home I realized once again how much I was in love with the world. Looking at the clouds above the beautiful green, yellow, red landscape looked like music, an enormous symphony above the world. In such moments I don't understand why one cannot love life. (I am fully aware of all the bad things in the world happening at the same time.)

I hope very much to bump into Philippe on my next visit to Paris.

monologue 01
(28 May 2013)
monologue 02
(28 May 2013)
monologue 03
(28 May 2013)
 

Thomas Sillard

multi-media artist

France

http://thomassillard.wordpress.com

Thomas arrived exactly on time at 11am. A cool looking guy with a black leather jacket and denims. He seems a bit shy at first. While we're having a coffee in the kitchen Aurèlie explains the project to him. Although he said that he might not be able to talk for a very long time he ended up doing a monologue that was over 30 minutes. He talked about a piece of work he had done at La Maison and ended up with war stories of his great-grand father.

Thomas is a great technician. He creates interactive installation with sound and video and machines and all sort of stuff. Very interesting. I really want to see his work on his website. The more he gets into details, the more excited he becomes, his whole body is talking! Interaction with the public seems to be an important part of his practice. He wants people to experience what he does, share his excitement.

A down-to-earth kinda guy who is full of treasures and knowledge. After the monologues he talks about his time in Africa and the political scenarios there. Very interesting indeed.

It is difficult not to like him. He is such an open-minded person who listens to others and does not have the need to get his message fully across... but listens! Something one does not find often in the world of art.

During the monologues with him I realized why I often get very tired and exhausted during the session: It is because I fully concentrate on the person talking as I watch almost the entire monologues through the screen of my cameras. For some reason I have a lot more freedom to observe as my eyes can stare at certain points of the body which you cannot do in a direct conversation. He said that the fact that I am not looking at him creates more space to dive deeper inside and find stuff to talk about. This is a very interesting point.

 

 

 

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