Artists' Television Access

Faith Holland: Pixelated Desires

Sunday, November 18, 2018, 5:00 pm, $7-$10

Known for deploying humor as a key strategy, Faith Holland reinvents ideas about gender, sexuality, and the body as they relate to internet culture. Pixelated Desires takes us inside Holland’s moving image practice by bringing together a selection of videos and GIFs. Highlights include WWW³, a trilogy that envisions the web as endless tunnels, a flickering screen, and a pyramid of CRT TVs playing cat videos; Porn Interventions, which were specifically made for RedTube and asymptotically approach pornography, and TechnoMakeup, videos that mashup makeup and tech tutorials.

Faith Holland is an artist, curator, and educator whose multimedia practice focuses on gender, intimacy, and technology. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at venues such as The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York), NRW Forum (Düsseldorf), Fotografisk Center (Copenhagen), Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art (Boulder), Boston Cyberarts Gallery (Boston), the Philips Collection (Washington, D.C.), Human Resources (Los Angeles), DAM Gallery (Berlin), and File Festival (São Paulo). Her work has been written about in Artforum, The Sunday Times UK, Elephant, Hyperallergic, Broadly, and ArtSlant among others. She was a 2014 NYFA Fellowship Finalist in Digital/Electronic Art. In 2016, she was an artist-in-residence at Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning and Harvestworks and a finalist for Fotomuseum Winterthur’s Post-Photography Prototyping Prize. Her second solo exhibition, Speculative Fetish, with Transfer Gallery in Brooklyn was in 2017-8.



GIF reel, 2011-2018, looping

The GIF reel will include the projects Visual Orgasms and Dirty Blingees in addition to other assorted GIFs.

Artist’s Statement, 2011, 2:04 min

Artistʼs Statement is a commentary on the emptiness of the language often (but not always) used to describe art. Although the video is from the point-of-view of the artist, the problem of trying to verbally describe visual work extends to that of curators, critics, and the like.

Improving, Non-Stop, 2011, 11:38 min

Improving, Non-Stop is a science fiction short exploring contemporary magazine-culture beauty standards and the part they play in everyday life. Using myself as a subject, I did a thorough retouching of a self-portrait in Photoshop. This process is edited down to show certain salient moments in real time. The film then breaks into live action and I wear a mask of the retouched self-portrait. My face is transformed into a “perfect” version of myself, but the act of wearing a mask prevents normal activity and interaction. The result is darkly humorous and thoroughly uncomfortable.

RIP Geocities, from the series WWW3, 2011, 2:32 min

As though on a rollercoaster at an amusement park, RIP Geocities is a ride through what Hollywood envisioned as cyberspace in the 1990’s. Geocities, a website that hosted personal homepages for free, was a locus of creative Internet energy in the 1990’s. This video abstractly represents and mourns the loss of not only the Geocities website, but also the culture it engendered teeming with polyphonic, hand-coded web presences.

Analog Internet, from the series WWW3, 2012, 5:12 min

Analog Internet is a video-sculpture that reveals a pyramid of three-dimensional rendered CRT televisions, each with a different cat video appropriated from YouTube playing. This is the core of the Internet: an Egyptian site of worship for cats. Considering the Internet’s obsession with cats, Analog Internet re-imagines having the same relationship to cat videos in physical, not digital, space.

Screen Flicker, from the series WWW3, 2012, 1:40 min

Screen Flicker re-stages the flatness of the computer screen, in direct opposition to the tunnels of cyberspace. Screens naturally flicker, at a rate too quick for our eyes to perceive but one that can be captured by a camera. This video confuses the medium of the computer screen with that of film, employing the classic avant-garde film strategy of flicker.

Light Petting, 2013, 1:14 min

Heavy Petting, 2013, 1:59 min

Light Petting and Heavy Petting are a video couplet about our bodily relation to images we see on the screen. The videos suggest a different relationship to the virtual image, one that is both affective and physical. Heavy Petting, in particular, complicates the viewer’s relationship to pornographic images in multiple ways. There is an appropriation of heterosexual male-targeted porn for a female audience and rather than identify with the penis, the viewer relates with the woman’s actions. But this identification is incomplete and instead a triadic relationship is formed between the couple on screen and the viewer in meatspace.

Technolust WARNING, 2014, 2:03 min

Technolust WARNING is a found spam video that is obliquely advertising porn addiction assistance. The video is edited to suggest a technological component to this supposed ‘addiction.’

 Shaving Cream on RedTube, from the series Porn Interventions, 2014, 3:20 min

Lick Suck Screen 2 on RedTube, from the series Porn Interventions, 2014, 1:19 min

Clit Cam on RedTube, 2014, from the series Porn Interventions, 1:18 min

Porn Interventions is a series of site-specific videos made for RedTube. The works invoke pornographic tropes but defy porn viewers’ expectations. The videos are uploaded to RedTube using the site’s own vernacular clickbait, with tags such as “solo girl,” “BBW,” “amateur,” etc. Instead of the free flow of sexualized bodies, porn surfers are confronted with something critical, strange, and not very sexy.

Romantic Rosy Rothko Makeover for Twitter, from the series TechnoMakeup, 2016, 13:48 min

One Simple Trick to Rejuvenate Your Laptop, from the series TechnoMakeup, 2016, 3:24 min

TechnoMakeup is a YouTube channel consisting of makeup tutorial videos for devices, apps, and websites. The series reflects on the intimate relationship we have with our technology—using it morning and night, updating its software, checking its notifications, and stroking its screen. In the tutorials, I apply moisturizer and makeup to devices like phones, tablets, and computer monitors; thus the care and maintenance that we enact on our bodies, particularly feminine bodies, is remapped onto technology. This allows for a customization and an aesthetic that is reminiscent of the early web: colorful, glittery, and user-generated.

Wire Bath, 2017, 4:26 min

Wire Bath is a fetishistic performance in which I enact my fantasy of being in a bathtub full of ethernet cords. The cords entwine my body and peek out of the water like tentacles from the ocean. As more and more of our technologies are ‘wireless’ and we continue to use the cloud as the dominant metaphor for understanding the internet, I re-connect with the physical cables used to transfer data. The tub becomes a miniature model of cyberspace and repositions the cloud underwater, where much of the physical infrastructure of the internet does in fact exist. I embed myself in this cybertub and the cables and I wash and relax together.

Hello Barbie: The First Dispatch, 2018, 8:14 min

Hello Barbie: The First Dispatch tests the limits of Mattel’s first AI Barbie that was launched as part of a growing trend of AI toys in 2015. Barbie can converse with her owner and generate tailored statements. Because she is wifi-enabled, she can stay up-to-date with what’s going on in the world. Hello Barbie records everything she hears in order to add to her repertoire. Unlike friends who you have to say goodbye to at the end of the day, you can take Barbie to bed with you and talk to her until you fall asleep. The potential for constant contact and lack of regular social contexts expedites trust building.

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