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With this work, originally produced for the Canadian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, Cardiff and Miller focus on the language and experience of cinema. Viewers approach a simple plywood pavilion, mount a set of stairs, and enter a lush, dimly lit interior complete with red carpet and two rows of velvet-covered seats. Once seated, they peer over the balcony onto a miniature replica of a grand old movie theatre created with hyper-perspective. This is the first in a series of illusions orchestrated by Cardiff and Miller. Viewers then put on the headphones provided and the projection begins.

Extended Description
At least two stories run simultaneously. There is the “visual film” and its accompanying soundtrack that unfolds before the viewers; layered over this is the “aural action” of a supposed audience. The film is a mix of genres: it is part noir, part thriller, part sci-fi, and part experimental. What is more particular about the installation is the personal binaural “surround sound” that every individual in the audience experiences through the headphones. The sense of isolation each might feel is broken by intrusions seemingly coming from inside the theatre. A cellphone belonging to a member of the audience rings. A close “female friend” whispers intimately in your ear: “Did you check the stove before we left?” Fiction and reality become intermingled as absorption in the film is suspended and other realities flow in.
 
Related Press Articles
Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller - The Paradise Institute (PDF 92 kb)
The New York Times, by: Keven Johnson, April 12, 2002
Grand Illusions (PDF 96 kb)
The Examiner, by: Robin Tierney, Nov. 17, 2006
 
 
 
VIDEO CLIP
06:34
(flash required)
CARDIFF & MILLER

Materials: Mixed Media

Duration: 13 min.

Dimensions: 5.1m x 11m x 3m high