There is No Shame in Delight: Prelude

There is No Shame in Delight by Helen Mathwin and Hermione Merry is a two-channel video work, shot on 4K red cameras in a combination of real time and slow motion. The edited work lasts for 30mins. The work extends each artist’s practice through engaging performance practice and a highly orchestrated real-time film shoot.

It is a barren landscape. Echoes of a nostalgic, post-apocalyptic, cinematic world resonate. It is night with a slight wind, a dark expanse of sky, building-less and without foliage to interrupt the horizon. There are two horses, a significant distance from one another. Much earth must be traversed for them to meet. This is durational. There are two female performers on the ground with the horses. The performers drag themselves, connected to the dust to the dull thrumming of a distant drum. They move slowly towards one another. A camera for each performer. The horses snort and paw the earth, hesitant prancing, dancing. The performers’ gazes connect across vast distance. The horses have powerful torches strapped to their heads, intermittently lighting the performers and the smoke-dusty ground. As the women come closer it is revealed that there is a car, a 1990s commodore in the landscape. The car is illuminated by the headlights of a second vehicle, a limousine with tinted windows, idling calmly, exhaust billowing. The women are closer. They reach out their fingers to touch. As they physically connect the commodore explodes behind them in the night. The horses gallop into the void of darkness. The performers bodies relax and they watch the explosion. The limousine slowly exits the scene. One screen goes dark. On the second screen we witness the cameraman putting away his gear, having a laugh. The performers continue to watch the burning, firelight on their faces. The second screen goes dark.

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