Gestures of Collapse
by Helen Anna Flanagan, 2019, 11'
11’7’’. Courtesy the artist

Schermo dell'Arte - Archivio Film  Presented at Lo schermo dell'arte 2020 in occasion of the exhibition Resisting the Trouble – Moving Images in Times of Crisis
The film is part of VISIO – European Programme on Artists’ Moving Images - 9th edition
Winner of VISIO Young Talent Acquisition Prize (6th edition) 

Gestures of Collapse is inspired by a news story about alleged Coca Cola poisoning in numerous high schools in Belgium in the 1990s. After an investigation, the epidemic was recognized as a mass sociogenic illness (MSI): ‘a constellation of symptoms of an organic disease, without identifiable cause, which occurs between two or more people who share beliefs related to those symptoms.’ Gestures of Collapse uses the television news format to reveal the ways in which contagion, rumors, beliefs, emotions, and actions spread. The work reflects on human action, the mimetic unconscious and the ways in which behaviors are predicted, influenced, reproduced and manipulated.
Helen Anna Flanagan (UK/Irland, 1988) combines real events with fictitious narratives to produce video, installation and performance. By constructing and imagining scenarios — often making use of the category of the absurd — she investigates social structures and the political subtext of the everyday, focusing on affects and emotions, labor and the body. Her works have been shown in numerous international film festivals such as Go Short International Film Festival, Sharjah Film Platform, November Film Festival, Proyector Plataforma de Videoarte, Experiments in Cinema v.5.1, Film and Video Poetry Symposium, Plymouth Contemporary and Art Rotterdam. Helen is the winner of the 2019 IKOB Feminist Art Prize and is part of the post-academic residency at HISK (2019-2020).

[close details]