This is a site specific video work made for "Subterranean," a group exhibition of RMIT MFA alumni in Melbourne's Campbell Arcade, curated by Leanne Waterhouse.
Campbell Arcade is one of my favourite places in Melbourne. Works shown here are presented in a series of vitrines lining an underground passage between Flinders street train station and a popular cafe district. Though the arcade sometimes smells of piss, it also has a very particular sense of place - like it might one day appear in a movie.
When the opportunity to participate in this show arose, I spent an hour or two sitting on one of the benches lining the exhibition space, trying to be receptive to the particulars of the site. What made it feel so unique? One of the things I became mindful of was that the arcade slopes gently down towards the train station and the river beyond. Though it's not immediately obvious, the vitrines at one end of the arcade sit slightly higher than those at the other.
I wondered if it might be possible to draw attention to this and piggyback some other thoughts onto that awareness. The resultant two channel video work is comprised of brief snippets of scenes from genre films in which characters are imperilled by rising waters. Water levels were carefully matched between scenes across two screens that hang at different levels to one another, but are consistent to their respective vitrines. This has an effect on the apparent water level across screens. You might be surprised how much visual effects work goes into executing such a simple gag.