Anri Sala b. 1974
Now I See (2004)
Upon entering the installation of Anri Sala's Now I see (2004), his first 35-mm film, the viewer is enveloped in total darkness. The effect is, at first, purposefully disorienting; then a flicker of light flashes upon a 10 x 12 foot screen. A second or two later, the face of a young man emerges from the pitch-black along with the pulse of an electric guitar.
What follows seems to adhere to fairly standard conventions of rock video, with its guitar antics and male posturing, until a dog-shaped balloon falls on to the stage and disrupts the scene.
Despite the film's opening pretense, Sala is anything but a conventional filmmaker. Trained as a painter in his native Albania before studying film in France, Sala, now based in Berlin, merges an interest in color, particularly black and white, with structuralist explorations of language and sound.
susan snodgrass (chicago)