Text about the work “Poor Little Creatures” by Stef Van Bellingen



By attaching a small glass plate in front of a digital (video)camera, this apparatus goes back, in terms of atmosphere, to the pioneer phase of image making. Already for a long time Kumi Oguro is fascinated by the expressive potential of the unsharpness, especially in her portraits that were realized with a simple camera obscura (pinhole camera). Also in the video piece ‘Poor Little Creatures’ this subjectivity dominates and the actions passes on discontinuously by which a relationship with psychic subconscious process occurs. This impression is intensified since the eyes of the portrayed people stay closed most of the time. Besides, the action is slightly slowed down and the opening of the eyes evokes the impression of awakening. In spite of this slumbering state, the lips keeps on gesticulating all the time, but the sound doesn’t penetrate. The inaudible language seems to be no longer wanting to grasp the reality and is restricted to an expressive gesture. Not only in her use of a digital video camera but also in the action that is recorded with it, the artist shows us the elementary grammar of image and communication.