You Need to Know This

You Need to Know This, 1:47, 2016

He needs to know what he clearly does not know. The sex is bad and the parties dull. The man peers in vain. The women tell him to shove it and laugh. The historical becomes distorted and reconfigured through the lens of the contemporary.

You Need to Know This is comprised of appropriated mutoscope* erotica footage from c. 1900 of a peeping tom watching women, combined with text sourced from a personal collection of spam email subject-headers for male sexual enhancement supplements. The appropriation and reconfiguration of this erotic footage, which originally presents the moving images from the vantage point of the peeping man, disrupts the viewing expectation and reclaims a voice in representation by subverting the expected relationship, censoring viewer access, and controlling individual privacy.

 

you-need-to-know-this_man_rayburn

The re-composition of these spam statements into guiding directives is superficially humorous, but the underlying premise reveals repeated implications of inadequacy in terms of sexual prowess and relationship capability. The statements consistently imply individual failure and a lack of fulfillment for the receiving partner.

The email subject headers are composed in such a way so as to avoid the filters implemented by the email program – the email headers themselves almost never contain overt sexual references, but rather very much occupy the realm of sexual innuendo. These statements reveal the gymnastic zeal of the market to circumnavigate email filter systems, as well as the immensity of the online sex industry.

 This conflation of these competing yet simultaneously troubling perspectives merely scrapes the surface, but gestures towards the shifting ground of new relational configurations.

you-need-to-know-this_still_pied-piper_rayburn

* A mutoscope was a motion picture machine from the turn of the 20th century, designed for viewing moving photographs, similar in principle to a flip-book. The content varied, but often contained erotica, individually viewable through the machine eyepieces for a small fee. The coinciding of payment and viewing of women in states of public indecency positioned these machines as morally corrupt.

Images: Mutoscope Footage compiled from What the Butler Saw (c.1900) & Mutoscope, Untitled
Text: Yahoo Spam Email Headers
Music: Fletcher Henderson & His Orchestra, Shanghai Shuffle, New York, 1924 (youtube)
Additional Audio: Sagetyrtle (freesound.org)

Nicole Rayburn 2016

 

consume repeat #3

Nicole Rayburn, consume repeat #3, 0:13 loop, 2016

This series of short videos explores the notion of repetition through the isolation of specific gestures. The series focuses on animal interactions with their environments, specifically involving activities surrounding consumption.

The visual effects applied to all three videos position them in the realm of a futuristic hyper-reality while simultaneously resonating with the popular culture of low-fi imagery of youtube animal videos and gifs. Using humour and beauty, the videos explore the complex relations between species and the need for survival.

In consume repeat #3, the subtle violence of the exchange between the Pelican and the Pigeon is contrasted with the humorous and persistent method of the Pelican trying to swallow a large, moving entity. Organic gestures are mechanized into a loop, and the movements speak to habit, compulsion, obsession, and absurdity.

Pelican Gif 2

Found Footage: Pelican Eats Pigeon
Audio samples by Freed, Kangaroovindaloo, & Reitanna (freesound.org)

Nicole Rayburn 2016

consume repeat #2

This series of short videos explores the notion of repetition through the isolation of specific gestures. The series focuses on animal interactions with their environments, specifically involving activities surrounding consumption.

Nicole Rayburn, consume repeat #2, 1:18, 2016

In consume repeat #2, the subtle violence of the exchange between the Monarch Butterflies is contrasted with the slightly humorous frailty of their bodies. Organic gestures are mechanized through the editing process, and the movements speak to habit, compulsion, obsession, and absurdity.

monarchs 3

Nicole Rayburn, consume repeat #2, Still, 1:18, 2016

The metaphor of the butterfly effect – the notion that the minuscule flapping of the wings of a butterfly can dramatically affect the outcome of events in a larger system, such as weather – emphasizes the inter-connectivity of all entities and actions. When seen through the lens of isolated exchanges between insect bodies, this reveals the potential impacts of small violences, and the larger effects they can have. The piece seeks to reflect on what the flap of a wing might mean through repetition, as a flap is never in isolation. Although there is repetition, duration and accumulation deny repeat experiences, and through this repetition emerges the possibility for reinvention (Deleuze).

Audio samples by Headphaze (freesound.org)

Exhibitions:

2017 Antimatter [Media Art], Victoria, Canada (upcoming)

2016 Binnar Visual Arts Festival, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Portugal

Available for distribution through VTape. Please contact: distribution@vtape.org

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Nicole Rayburn 2017

UsThemThemUs

UsThemThemUs is a video comprised of statements extracted from sci-fi cinema in which characters attempt to articulate a boundary between humans and non-humans. These declarations of difference desperately seek to establish delineations between human and machine and animal, yet often resort to nebulous-to-define traits such as emotion, belief, or the soul. Rather than establish clear definitions of what the human is or is not, these attempts instead reveal a slippery space of boundary determinations. Also revealed are the anxieties and pejorative associations entangled with notions of difference and otherness, particularly when ‘the other’ begins to become the same…

Nicole Rayburn, UsThemThemUs, 5:38, 2015

The prevalence of films and TV series such as Bladerunner, Terminator, and Battlestar Gallactica reveal the modern-day anxiety surrounding the boundary between the ‘natural’ and the ‘unnatural’. Fragmented sentences extracted from these sources scroll through the video, overlap, become entangled and overwhelmingly incomprehensible at points. The delineations used to define the human – soul, emotion, or belief – are vague and intangible and do little to establish clarity between the human versus the non-human.

UsThemThemUs_Rayburn

The visual fragments are sourced from online videos and show humans somewhat violently interacting with non-humans – in one clip and baby and child are attacking one another, and in another humans kick robots. Historically, humans have defined themselves in contrast to animals, which was also a continually complicated and fluctuating terrain, yet the contemporary threat is clearly becoming the machine. The response of the Robotic Dogs to the human kicks in the video shows the scientific breakthrough of the robot responding to an unexpected change in the environment and immediately adapting and stabilizing itself. This development is significant in the scientific community, yet also veers towards the actual realization of an artificial intelligence that has only been until recently, anxiously dreamed about by writers and filmmakers. As the machine and the human rapidly become closer in capability, we must contemplate the realities of what this new relationship with ‘the other’ will mean, and the potential manifestations that it can take.

UsThemThemUs_Rayburn

Text and audio statements are all direct citations from selected films.

Audio Samples: Timbre & Aran Reginald

Exhibitions & Screenings:

2017 UsThemThemUs, Underneath the Floorboards, Hackney Picture House, London, UK

2016 UsThemThemUs, Jornadas de Reapropiación, Touring Program, Faro Aragón, Mexico City, Mexico

2016 Jornadas de Reapropiación (Journeys of Reappropiation), Centro de Cultura Digital, México City, Mexico

2016 Antimatter [Media Art], Victoria, Canada (upcoming)

2016 Experiments in Cinema v11.4, Albuquerque, USA

2015 FACT (Foundation for Art & Creative Technology, UK) and Channels (Channels Video Festival) Artist Bursary Shortlist, Curated by Soda Jerk, Shona Illingworth, Rory MacBeth, and Sarah Tutton. Screening in MPavilion, Melbourne, Australia

2015 Interventions Fuse Factory, Ohio State University Mansfield Gallery, OH, USA, Curated by Tyler Cann, Amy M. Youngs, Alison Colman, Kate Shannon, and Doo Sung Yoo (group) http://fuse2015.thefusefactory.org/

Available for distribution through VTape. Please contact: distribution@vtape.org

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Nicole Rayburn 2017

How to Identify a Witch

Nicole Rayburn, How to Identify a Witch, 3:34, 2014

How to Identify a Witch references historically documented methods used to identify and prosecute a witch. The methods presented in the video, although seemingly bizarre, are sourced from witch hunting manuals, such as the Malleus Maleficarum (The Hammer of Witches), which were commonly used reference texts throughout the European justice system during the witch craze.

How to Identify a Witch_7_Orgies

Simple animations created from illustrations and woodcuts derived from these texts serve to emphasize the absurdity and popular prevalence of the witch craze event, but also gesture towards the problematic belief systems that fostered the emergence of this crazed phenomenon that targeted primarily women and the socially vulnerable as ‘others’.

HOw to Identify a Witch_2_Kissing Butt

The continued relevance of this historical topic is manifold. Persecution in the form of repression, exclusion, torture, and execution, premised solely in intolerance of difference, be that physical, behavioral, or spiritual, is still prevalent. As Joseph Klaits poignantly states in Servants of Satan: The Age of the Witch Hunts, “Plainly, we are not dealing with obsolete issues when we consider such problems as the roots of intolerance, manifestations of prejudice against women and minorities, the use of torture by authoritarian rulers, and attempts by religious and political ideologues to impose their values on society”. The witch is a scapegoat blamed for random misfortunes, but more so persecuted for social position, difference, and otherness – emphasizing the continued importance as an issue of contemplation today.

Audio: Devil’s Waltz Hum by AlucardsBride (freesound.org)

How to Identify a Witch_Rayburn

Selected Screenings & Exhibitions:

2016 London Ontario Media Arts Association, Curated by Christina Battle

2016 Cómo reconocer a una bruja, Lima Film Festival, Video Babel Festival Tour Selection, Lima, Peru (Spanish translation)

2015 Video Babel Festival, Cusco, Peru
2015 [.Box] Videoart Project Space Milano, organized by 28th Festival Les Instants Vidéo, Curated by Marc Mercier, Milan, Italy
2015 28th Festival Les Instants Vidéo, [.Box] Program, Marseille, France
2015 Archivo Queer Italia: Religious Bondage, Cuntemporary, London, UK
2014 Which Witch? SOVA Gallery, Dawson City, Yukon

Available for distribution through VTape. Please contact: distribution@vtape.org

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Nicole Rayburn 2017

The Serpent & The Mouse

Nicole Rayburn, The Serpent & The Mouse, 3:31, 2013

The Serpent & The Mouse addresses the understanding of the serpent as inescapably associated to the biblical story of original sin – The Fall – and problematizes the associations of this metaphor. The demonization of the female position in this narrative, namely Eve, who is forever after burdened with the bizarre notions of sole responsibility and eternal implications, is shown to be absurd both through its malleability and its metaphorical construction. The Serpent & The Mouse also shows a mouse being eaten by a snake.

Serpent and the Mouse_Rayburn_Eve is also Tricky

The same footage repeats eight times in various manifestations, playfully using text to complicate the understandings of the imagery, problematize the position of power, and to re-position the serpent with more ‘obvious connotations’.

Still_SerpentMouse_Stupid_Rayburn

Selected Screenings:

2016 24HR Cinema Festival, Selection from Athens Digital Arts Festival 2014/2015, Curated by Eirini Olympiou, x-church, Gainsborough, UK

2016 Delete TV, Channel C31 Public Braodcast, Melbourne, Australia

2016 Delete TV, Channel OKTO TV Public Broadcast, Austria

2015 European Media Arts Festival Tour, Ankara International Film Festival, Ankara, Turkey

2015 European Media Arts Festival Tour, City 46, Universität Bremen, Bremen, Germany

2014 European Media Arts Festival Tour, ZKM | Center for Art & Media, Karlsruhe, Germany

2014 European Media Arts Festival Tour, German Culture Goethe-Institute, Paris, France, Curated by Ralf Sausmikat

2014 27th Festival Les Instants Vidéo, Marseille, France

2014 Athens Video Art Festival, Athens, Greece, Curated by Erini Olypmiou

2014 Video Art Festival Miden, Kalamata, Greece.

2014 European Media Arts Festival, Osnabrück, Germany. Curated by Joke Ballentijn, Katrin Mundt, Ralf Sausmikat, and Sebastiaan Schlicher

Video available for distribution through VTape. Please contact: distribution@vtape.org

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Nicole Rayburn 2016

Cold Cuts Video Festival

Cold Cuts Logo 2016 cropped

Cold Cuts Video Festival is an annual curated exhibition of video works by contemporary Canadian and international artists. This event runs in conjunction with the Dawson City International Short Film Festival held in Dawson City, Yukon, Canada.

In 2013, I founded, produced, and curated the inagural Cold Cuts, and it has continued into it’s fourth iteration in 2016 with the gracious support of many individuals, as well as Canada Council for the Arts, Yukon Arts Fund, Dawson City International Short Film Festival , Klondike Institute of Art & Culture, & Yukon School of Visual Arts.

For more detailed information, please visit https://coldcutsvideofestival.wordpress.com/

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Cold-Cuts-Video-Festival-428091480669100/

2016 Cold Cuts Video Festival: Disrupting Binaries

cold cuts stills 3

Image: Marina Roy, The Floating Archipelago, Still

The program this year, Disrupting Binaries, is curated by Corinna Ghaznavi, and focuses on Canadian women working in video and animation who address the human relationship with the surrounding environment.

Selected artists include:

05_Kelly-Mark_108-Leyton-Ave_2014_72-ppi-670x370  Kelly Mark, 108 Lezton Avenue, 10:13, DV, 2014

cold cuts stills 3  Marina Roy, The Floating Archipelago, 6:20, Animation, 2015

04_Christie_01_OffRoute2_filmstill  Amanda Dawn Christie, Off Route 2, 10:30, 35mm, 2011

03_Lisa-Birke-Calendar Girls  Lisa Birke, Calendar Girls, 4:00, HDV, 2014

02_Supnet_gainslosses_1  Leslie Supnet, Animation Series, 2:39, Animation, 2014

The program curator, Dr. Corinna Ghaznavi, will be in attendence to give a talk on the exhibition during the Opening Reception event on Friday, March 25 from 4-6pm in the SOVA Gallery.

Dr. Corinna Ghaznavi is an independent curator and freelance writer.  She has curated exhibitions across Canada and the Netherlands and her writing has been published in Canadian and European art publications.

Gallery Exhibition Hours: Saturday, March 26th 12-5pm & Sunday, March 27th 12-5pm

Festival Curator: Corinna Ghaznavi

Festival Producer: Nicole Rayburn

Assistant Producers: Dan Sokolowski & Veronica Verkley

Many thanks to Canada Council for the Arts, Yukon Arts Fund, Dawson City International Short Film Festival , Klondike Institute of Art & Culture, & Yukon School of Visual Arts for their generous support.

 

2015 Cold Cuts Video Festival: Faking It

Television occupies the cultural periphery of our everyday. Its structures are entrenched and recognizable. Its intentions are constructed yet ambiguous. Its influence pervasive. And we must question it.

The works in the 2015 iteration of Cold Cuts Video Festival: Faking It use parody and imitation to explore the facets and broad influence of television. Although mimicking the codes of television, these video works defy sublimation into the agendas, politics, and power structures of media conglomerates and imagine a new and glaringly absurd television world.

As Alex Bag states, her work “skewers the tropes of consumer and media culture. Questioning how we define ourselves in relation to television, fashion, advertising and the artworld, [these works are] mediated parodies that teeter between celebration and critique.”

Selected artists include:

  Alex Bag, Untitled (Project for Whitney Museum) 38 min, 2009

  General Idea, Test Tube, 28:15 min, 1979

Artist TBA

Curated by Nicole Rayburn

This three-day exhibition at the SOVA Gallery will run in conjunction with the well-established Dawson City International Short Film Festival from April 3 – 5, 2015.

Please join us for an Opening Reception in the SOVA Gallery on Friday, April 3, 2015 from 4-6pm.

Gallery Exhibition Hours: Saturday, April 4 12-5pm & Sunday, April 5 1-5pm

Festival Director: Alyssa Friesen

Festival Producer & Curator: Nicole Rayburn

Many thanks to the Yukon Arts Fund, the Klondike Institute of Art & Culture & the Yukon School of Visual Arts for their generous support.

 

2014 Cold Cuts Video Festival: Revel In It

The presence of the media and the online world is omnipresent. Its relevance is poignant and inescapable. And we must revel in it.

The works in this 2014 iteration of Cold Cuts Video Festival, Revel in It, explore the world of pop culture and mass media – they envelop it and wallow in it, and from within this spectrum, reflect on the possibilities of social reconfiguration and plurality of identity. The critique of contemporary culture is a shameless and simultaneous embrace. Notions of confining gender constructs and otherness are blown apart and rebuilt in endless configurations for the purposes of imagining something different.

Selected artists include:

  Ryan Trecartin: I-Be Area (108:00) 2007 (*screening only)

  Pipilotti Rist: I’m Not the Girl Who Misses Much (7:46) 1986

  Kent Monkman: Mary (3:18) 2011

  Stephen Andrews & John Greyson: On Message (9:05) 2006

  Istvan Kantor: Anti-Christ: Neoist Hokey-Pokey (5:30) 2010

  Kelly Richardson: Twilight Avenger (5:40) 2008

  Jeremy Bailey: Transhuman Dance Recital #1 (6:29) 2007

  Lisa Birke Red Carpet (15:00) 2013

Curated by Nicole Rayburn

This three-day exhibition at the ODD Gallery will run in conjunction with the well-established Dawson City International Short Film Festival from April 18 – 20, 2014.

Please join us for an Opening Reception in the ODD Gallery on Friday, April 18, 2014 from 4-6pm.

Gallery Exhibition Hours: Saturday, April 19 11-5pm & Sunday, April 20 1-5pm

Festival Director: Justine Hobbs

Festival Producer & Curator: Nicole Rayburn

The exhibition venue, the ODD Gallery, is a Canadian artist-run-center, recognized for presenting contemporary work art of artists of a national and international caliber.

Many thanks to the Yukon Arts Fund, the Klondike Institute of Art & Culture, & the Yukon School of Visual Arts for their generous support.

Festival Tour: Fredericton, New Brunswick:

Connexion ARC is excited to host the 2014 Cold Cuts Video Festival Revel in It on tour from Dawson City, Yukon from November 6 – 20, 2014. Curated by Nicole Rayburn, eight video works will be exhibited as screenings and looped video installations in Connexion ARC’s main space gallery and at various off-site locations downtown.

http://connexionarc.org/2014/10/22/revel-in-it/

 

Participating Artists: 2013 Cold Cuts Video Festival

The thematic focus of the 2013 exhibition is the human intersection with the surrounding environment, and the various approaches that are taken to navigate this encounter. This theme has particular relevance in Dawson, as there is little reprieve from the elements – there is address to them, and intersection/interaction with them.

telepathacats-2  FASTWÜRMS Telepathacats  (3:20) 2003

pond-2-copy  Deirdre Logue Pond (4:30) 2012

the-hill-01  Dana Claxton The Hill (3:49) 2004

precipitate11  Jennifer Campbell Precipitate (3:43) 2010

wong-vigil  Paul Wong (Rebecca Belmore) Vigil 5.4 (8:29) 2010

dscf6766  Veronica Verkley The Long Now (40:00) 2013

storm-still-copy  Paul Wong Storm (7:30) 2009

battle_sasquatch-no2a-still  Christina Battle Tracking Sasquatch (field report #1) (5:00) 2010

Curated by Nicole Rayburn

Many thanks to the Yukon Arts Fund, Klondike Institute of Art and Culture, the Yukon School of Visual Arts, and Dan Sokolowski in their generous support of this inaugural event.