A moving, living membrane separates spectators from the historical world depicted in the video, but breaks down slowly, infested by pixelbacteria.

‘Archaic Smile ‘ explores the world of archaeological theme parks and re-enactments of historic battles. The participants try to bring history back to life as realistically as possible.

Re-enacting and reliving the past transforms history into something you can experience yourself, into something that is alive and authentic. Reenactments are both an answer to the mediatized world, in which we tend to experience more and more through a (computer)screen, as a reaction to the fictionalization of the past in Hollywood films.

But to which extent is it possible to create an authentic image of the past? The re-enactments eventually tell us more about our time than about history.

Belgium, 2008, 19’05” (sound, colour). Collection: NIMk (Netherlands Media Art Institute) / LIMA and Lightcone Paris

music by TUK
assistance Bérengère Bodin

Archaic Smile is a coproduction with the Impakt Foundation, Utrecht in the framework of Impakt Works 2008, and has been made possible with the support of the City of Utrecht, the Mondriaan Foundation and the EU (Culture 2007).

Archaic Smile – VIDEO FRAGMENT: click here

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