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Themesicon: navigation pathArt and Cinematographyicon: navigation pathImmersion/Participation

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situations. On one hand, common household utensils strengthen the documentary character of the scenes. On the other, they aid in breaking down the observer’s perception of supposed boundaries between madness and reality, sympathy and alienation, and thus blur the separation between actor and audience. This loss of balance, which Ahtila creates in her video installations by intensifying the psychological character of the space itself, gives viewers the feeling that they are like real conversation partners in a therapeutic experiment. Her video characters are like chimeras playing very diverse roles; they embody the abysses and border zones of the human soul, and at the same time, reflect the actual observers’ ambivalent roles between fiction and reality. In this sense, they correspond to the main actors in Douglas Gordon's Hitchcock re-makes. The emotional and psychic forlornness of these characters represents precisely a feeling of being nowhere, which arises when one is engrossed in the total illusion of being in another place — a sensation that is familiar to the movie-going public. Somewhat analogous to the artificiality of film sets (which are fictitious spaces beyond reality and fiction,


and which claim their own form of theatricality [21] ), the artistic descriptions of the black box display all of the heterotopian traits mentioned by Foucault in his description of «other spaces.» Besides delineating geographical sites, they mark social border zones that contain divergences and crises. Although they exist synchronously with more «profane» zones, these social border zones are nevertheless organized according to their own laws, outside of the usual dimensions of time and space. [22] In a similar fashion to this concept of heterotopia, cinematic spaces embody another world, which corresponds to the dizziness, the illusion, the state of being disoriented, to which the actors in Hitchock’s «Vertigo» or Sidney Lumet’s «Dog Day Afternoon»(1975) succumb (as do their estranged forms, the remakes by Douglas Gordon or Pierre Huyghe).

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