‘The white t-shirt’ was the painting assigned to us but before we even knew the name of the image we started brainstorming interpretations, we came up with many ideas from expressing himself through dance to mental illnesses.
We shortlisted the best concepts and then looked for more information about the image to give us a sense of when and where this was set. The reasoning for not researching first was because we didn’t want the facts to affect our creativity but once we’ve come up with a few ideas we could retrieve the facts to enhance the idea.
‘The white t-shirt’ was 1946 painting by a Mexican painter named Guillermo Meza. After spending a bit of time searching for material we weren’t making any huge break throughs, there just isn’t much on this painting in particular. The libraries did not have any books on him and the majority of information that was available was from Wikipedia which isn’t the most reliable source.
‘Latin American art’ talks about Meza’s work as ‘expressionist – surrealist’ paintings,’ mainly drawing ‘from Indian mythology’. Also, the ‘denouncement against society’ This rebellious behaviour definitely sparked creative shot ideas and what kind of look we might go for because of the Indian mythology, however, what really stuck with us was his focus on religion and going against conventional views, painting extreme perspectives and opposing opposition.
Our trail of thought automatically went to ‘The Stanford prison experiment’. It took place in 1971 and was meant to last two weeks but only lasted six days. It consisted of young men being divided into roles of prisoners and prison guards. ‘The study provided a graphic illustration of the power of situations to shape individuals’ behaviour.’ Power situations was very much an aspect we wanted to include in our project especially because in previous lectures we had learnt about blocking and how this is effective in determining the relationship between the subjects. However, we still wanted to tie our idea back to religion and as I looked at the
However, we still wanted to tie our idea back to religion and as I looked at ‘The white T-shirt’ again, I saw femininity and expression of himself and instantly thought of conversion therapy. It’s basically a psychological treatment created to change a persons sexuality. I wanted to have a deeper understanding of this practice so I watched documentaries including VICE’S ‘Living through Gay Conversion therapy’. People who have actually experienced this appear on the documentary and talk about the different of types torture they went through, including being electric shocked; being forced to watch disturbing images next to homosexual ones and verbal torture.
This was incorporated into our final video, the basic narrative was about a boy who has been forced in conversion therapy. Our setting is a church and the person who will be carrying out the therapy is the priest.
A lot of the time there is a big likelihood that the people carrying out this therapy are insecure about their own sexuality so we tried to highlight that subtlely, concentrating on three methods of torture which was projecting images on the subjects face , intensive prayer/ exorcism and lastly waterboarding.
we won’t be able to understand the operations of trans-phobia, homophobia, if we don’t understand how certain kinds of links are forged between gender and sexuality in the minds of those who want masculinity to be absolutely separate from femininity.
Judith Butler is a strong believer in gender and sexuality fluidity, the idea that identity is performative but society makes us feel like there is a right and wrong way of being leaving a lot of people conforming and not being their true self. Our group needed to make sure that we weren’t sending the message in our film that sexuality can be altered. It would be damaging and insensitive, but at the same time, we didn’t want to spoon-feed the audience so there is a little room for interpretation.
We filmed with the black magic for the first time which extended our workflow massively, for one it’s hard to edit on our laptops with 4k footage and exporting a proxy took about 5 hours so we were literally waiting around to edit especially because we left it last minute.
It was definitely a learning experience and Its taught me to take care of my footage, backup everything and learnt a more industry styled working method.
Guillermo Meza(Mexico, 1917 – 1997) Artist Biography. Available: http://www.latinamericanart.com/en/artists/guillermo-meza/biography.html. Last accessed 2016
(1st sept 2016). Guillermo Meza (Artist). Available: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guillermo_Meza_(artist). Last accessed 2016.
(2008). The Stanford Prison Experiment. Available: http://www.bbcprisonstudy.org/bbc-prison-study.php?p=17. Last accessed 08-12-2016.
VICE. (2015). Living through gay conversion therapy. Available: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wD4sWQG2DnQ&t=1051s. Last accessed 2016.
JUDITH BUTLER (1990). Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. UNITED STATES: Routledge