This short video represents Coll.eo's contribution to CCA WORKING TITLE show (Sept 4-26, 2013) in Oakland, California.
Full text below:
"So, perhaps, I did die in that car accident, twenty plus years ago, and this thing happening right now, including you, watching this, or just pretending to, is a simulation concocted by an evil demon. Or perhaps in a parallel world I did, in fact, die. But in this particular one I am alive. Alive and talking.
In a sense, this is a re-enactment. A repetition of an accident. So it’s personal. It may also be political, I mean, WHAT HAPPENS AFTER CARS is a question loaded with extra miles. It is also a replay, as in “let’s see it from a different angle”, or better, in slow-motion, - I love the expression “a car crash in slow motion”. But this is not really happening in slow motion. It’s more of a freeze frame, isn't it?
Most of these layouts - we call them “layouts” after Philip K. Dick’s short story “The Days of Perky Pat” originally published in Amazing magazine in 1963 - are re-enactments of existing performances, installations, and sculptures. For instance, here is Maurizio Cattelan. Here is Barry McGee. Here is Ant Farm. Here is Dustin Shuler. Here is Erik Smith. Here is Betsabeé Romero… These mini-sets have been described as “staged dreams”, “nostalgic delusions,” and “ballardian fabrications”. We like to think of them as narrative places where the distinction between the real and the fictional converge and collapse. We are, clearly, delusional.
Each layout is simultaneously virtual, as in "immaterial","digital" - we created these scenes with a sandbox game/editing tool called Garry’s Mod - but also tangible, that is, it you can touch it and even smell it. It is completely fake and yet partially natural, insofar as the “frame” is made of wood. And the wood is covered with synthetic grass that we sprayed with the scent of “real” “FRESH CUT GRASS by Fragrances SPRAY”(™) which smells like real grass but it’s 100% artificial - the stuff they use to make fake Christmas trees seem more real than real.
Think of this as the model of a model, like in that novel by Paul Auster. Each piece is a copy - more or less unfaithful - of something existing in different form and format, but also, potentially, a miniature version of a future full-scale artwork. It is both a recuperation (of the past) and a premediation (of the future).
The EO component of Coll.eo came up with the initial set of digital photographs. The COLL component of Coll.eo suggested the sculptural iteration. Collectively, we take full responsibility for this act of insubordination. And, yes, indeed, there is a dash of Magritte. I am not referring just to the fact that the vehicles are suspended in mid-air, but also because the Matchbox cars function like a caption, a’ la “Ceci n’est pas une voiture”. Voila'!
Wait, this sounds like explaining a joke, and explaining a joke is like dissecting frogger.
So, I am going to stop here." (Coll.eo, 2013)