7 Dec 2018


SPEECH BOX – a contemporary video selection from France

Speech Box – a contemporary video selection from France, curated by Veronica Wiman was shown on the occasion of the project and seminar Two Scenes in Three Acts in June 9-11 2006, at Teater3 in Stockholm, Sweden. Now the program is presented in Helsinki, at the HIAP Project Room in Cable Factory, on Wednesday 27th September, starting at 6 p.m.

The thematical video program includes works by artists: Louidgi Beltrame, Jota Castro, Marcelline Delbecq, Angela Detanico and Rafael Lain, Cyprien Gaillard, Adriana Garcia Galan, Benoit Maire, Anri Sala and Virgine Yassef.

Curator Veronica Wiman will present the video program and the context of Two Scenes in Three Acts-event, followed by open discussion.

SPEECH BOX – a contemporary video selection from France

“What’s the difference when President Jacques Chirac or beatboxer Ezra gives the speech to the Nation? The differences I would say, lay within the rhythm, appearance of image, the use of language and most obviously the expected intentions.

We are all part of shaping meaning, we are voices expressing and practicing opinions and civic engagement in words, actions and material culture. The process between the subjective idea and force most often has a long journey to meet with one’s comprehension. This is where the medium constitutes its power and provides access, based on the human capability, on the receiving end. Language is said to be the basic necessity for all human communication, we would all understand each other if we only spoke the same one. But language in this context rather refers to a set of chosen tools and means.

A suggested metaphor for the presented selection of video works in this program would be beatboxing or multivocalism, where each individual takes part as a human beat machine providing a sound and component to a collective universal soundscape. One important meeting points and site for production for beatboxing is naturally the internet. Together they create a source of joint commitment and desires – a flow of beats hitting those who are willing to grasp. The current individual engagement is as strong of a political reflection and activity as one of the contemporary dead collective. The power among minorities – as Jacques Rancière replaces the disappearing cultural togetherness – when using a personal agenda and language will convince us to form a better universe.

Entitled Speech Box, the program borrows Adriana Garcia Galan’s title: Speech Box, a video where beatboxer Ezra in the backdrop of Paris Tour Eiffel, delivers President Chirac New Year’s Eve speech in 2005 from beginning to the end. Human beat boxers are mostly performers, part of the urban subculture (hip hop and rap), feeling a big distance or rejection for political discourses and politicians. The term “beatboxing” is derived from the mimicry of the first generation of drum machines, back then known as beat-boxes. Obviously the message delivery here relies on the human presence and skill.

Newly on the market we can all purchase S.A.M. or Voice box, they both speak English with a slight accent of Swedish perhaps, difficult to say according to the experts. Sadly, due to the wider range of dynamics in the female voice they have difficulties to have other than male voices at the moment. This synthesized voice device deliver something between fiction and reality, which may be compared with the fictional-real never ending discourse within moving image and contemporary art. It somehow becomes a question of intentions again, where we need to know them in order to constitute meaning. And yes, I still believe we care about signification and the potential in sharing it among us.”