Cinema Studies Colloquium, Homay King

Wednesday, October 6, 2010 - 12:00pm

Homay King (History of Art, Bryn Mawr College)

Between Will and Wandering: Eric Baudelaire’s Anabases

Xenophon’s The Anabasis of Cyrus chronicles the journey of a troupe of Greek soldiers who end up stranded deep in the Persian Empire after the slaughter of their leader. Their story and its figure, a U-turn following an epic military failure, provides a rich metaphor for thinking about the relationship between the familiar and the foreign, and the way that this binary opposition may be undone over the course of such a journey. Eric Baudelaire’s Anabases (2009) is a cycle of works that play with the trope of anabasis, including photos made by exposing film to airport security machines, a video about Antonioni’s fictive "Japanese period," and heliographs detailing the Japanese practice of bokashi or photographic censorship. In these works, anabasis is treated both as a literal round-trip journey and as a metaphor for the transformations that occur when an object is led astray from itself and returns back. In this project, I take anabasis as an occasion to think about the role that visual forms play in defining our relationships to alterity in the contemporary moment.

Cinema Studies Program
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