Now, All Eyes Are On Us is a video clip with the song "Life of Riley" by Kevin MacLeod and original lyrics by Olivia Hernaïz, sung by Leyla Huysal.
The video Now, All Eyes Are On Us is a childlike video clip transforming and derailing the logos of political parties of the world's twenty leading countries and international financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. The main concern of political parties is to stand out of the scenery. Each party needs a logo to condense its message. The recurrent logos are: trees for right-wing parties, birds for liberal parties, roses for left-wing parties and hammers and sickles for communist parties. The logos are the result of historical choices, which were at first made because they were powerful enough to symbolise something else than themselves: stability, liberty, revolution, labour... In the video, the logos, removed of context, appear simplistic and even cute, featuring smiling suns, stars, palm trees, birds and other animals. By juxtaposing logos of political parties in a childish video clip, I aim to level down the importance of their symbolism and turn them into ridicule.
The lyrics of the chorus are excerpts of official statements released during international political meetings such as the G-20. These meetings are usually held behind closed doors and the official statements are the only way for citizens to learn what decisions have been taken about their future. The paternalistic tone of these statements induces an (un)intentional infantilization of the population they address. Comfortably seating, the viewer is rocked by the video, which sells him a better tomorrow, yet he is confronted with his own passivity to the subliminal messages within each logo. I exaggerated the features of the international political system in which we live in order to show its absurdity. I invite the viewer to rethink the constructions of our democracies and to realize the distance between promises and reality.
When I began working on this video late 2016, I wanted to wake up the political animal asleep inside me, after years of listening to political speeches - too complex or too simplistic. I was indeed more and more disturbed by the pitfalls of the democratic system and the sham of recent elections. Nowadays, politicians are more afraid of the fall of the financial markets that the reactions of their own electors.
I also realized that it was impossible to live in an apolitical bubble as politics and finance sneak into every corner of our lives. Now, all eyes are on us is a video that oscillates between the childish and the spooky. While composing the song, I documented myself about children’s songs that have been used as torture songs in Guantanamo. I conceived the song as an unbearable ritournelle that would restlessly play in loop to finally reach the unconscious of the viewers. This repetitiveness echoes the pervasiveness of the current economic and political system, which we do not seek any alternative for, this pre-established framework from which we do not see the edges, these conventions that appear natural to us.
Capitalism is currently the overriding economic myth but it has not always been this way. It is a fairly recent construction of history. They are numerous myths that exist along with it such as gods, laws, democracy, money, states, justice… all these fictions have been invented by humans to be able to live together. Yet, humans live in bubbles of artificial light. They don’t remember where the sun is. Rivers and forests have become alien to them, or at least inconsequential. Nonetheless, their survival depends on the goodwill of fictions such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, G-20, the stock exchange… But our economy is solar. Everything that is produced relies on the sun - including humans.