Near Duc Pho

[person_by] Frank van der Stok

December 2019

The work reconstructs, or more exactly, recomposes the press photograph of an American airplane shot down by friendly fire. The Belgian artist David Claerbout (1969) travelled to the site of the accident 33 years later and took a series of photos of the landscape. He then assembled these stilles into a video animation onto which he superimposed the still image of the exploding plane. The result is an image whose temporality is hybrid, and whose mediality is unclassifiable. Vietnam is a single-channel video-installation, silent and in colour. There are subtle changes in light as if clouds were passing over the hills seen in the foreground of the landscape and on the surface of the airplane, whereas the background remains perfectly still. The three minute loop - with 10 second time lapses - appears as a continuous take, the light effect simulating the common real-time experience of clouds passing, an experience whose non-narrativity yields the impression of an extended present where 'what occured previously is essentialy simular to [or coincides with] what is occuring now'.

Frank van der Stok
Frank van der Stok (b. 1967) is a curator, editor, essayist and intermediary for artists and art institutions. He also works as an editor and producer of artists’ books.


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