Medium: Digital Video / Year: 2015

The rectangle of the screen is a masked exclusion, a silent metonymy.   With the correct lighting, the coherent splicing of sound, the moment can be slightly tilted, rearranged.  In this way an individual, or a society, can curate their reality.  Those who stage the play of history have deleted entire populations from memory.  While this process occurs daily, the digitization of actuality has made it dangerously easy.  Our past has become a commodity, traded with Facebook and Google’s shares.   The market can now dictate what we retain, what we keep, and what memories have the most capital gain.

In the video piece Mnimification I transposed this dangerous progression into the future. Mnimification is a combination of the Greek word for memory, mní̱mi̱, and the computer programing terminology, minification (the procedure through which all unnecessary characters are removed from the source code).  In this futuristic society all unnecessary memories are illegal.  They are extracted from their original hosts and stored on a corporate cloud.  Mnimifiers are the agents who ensure that this process occurs, penalizing those who retain their remembrances.  The narrative of Mnimification follows a mnimifier who commits the treasonous act of protecting four individuals and their recollections of the past. 

I collaborated with Sid Sondergard, John Collins, Maryam Laly and Aída Díaz de León to develop the personalities of these four rememberers.   Each of my co-creators constructed one of the individual characters, incorporating philosophical ponderings and personal narratives.  I visually illustrated these connected memories through animated photographic images.  The characters are blotted out of this image with white paint, left blank.  These negative white spaces traverse the screen, interact and call into question the voids of memory we threaten to become.  In the end, the Mnimifier, like us, is left with a choice: Do we condone this deletion, or do we commit the radical act of recalling that which is forbidden?

++ Name of Festival: Senior Film Thesis Festival. Location: St. Lawrence University, Canton NY. Date: April 28th.
++  Title of Show: “#Impermanence: Senior Year Seminar Fine Art Exhibition.” Location: Richard F. Brush Art Gallery, Canton NY. Date: April 24th, 2015 - May 30th, 2015.

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