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Purified by Fire
, 2006
Multi-channel video/audio installation:


Using the language and iconography of cinema as building blocks, Purified by Fire constructs an anti-mythic framework from which to reexamine social attitudes towards war, violence and morality.

Comprised of seamless video loops constructed from just a few seconds of iconic cinematic imagery and commercially available special effect stock footage, the individual works in the exhibition challenge the physical and moral gap that separates Westerners, and specifically Americans, from war and destruction.

Expanding on the artist’s previous investigations of Cinema as mythology, the work examines the mythos underlying an American mindset which demonizes foes, sanctions oppression, elevates militarism to a national value and facilitates a distinctly American notion of regeneration through violence.


Purified by Fire, 2006
Multi-channel video projection on
gallery windows,
created from
commercially available special-effects
stock footage


Continous loop



Purified by Fire, 2006
Composite installation view


Purified by Fire (Perpetual Explosion), 2006
Color video projection with audio,
(sound: Henry Flynt, Purified by the
Fire, 1983)

Continuous loop created from
commercially available special-effects
stock footage

Left: Purified by Fire (Trench), 2006
Color video with audio on LCD monitor,
Continuous loop

Right: Purified by Fire (Bunker), 2006
Color video with audio on LCD monitor,
Continuous loop

Scenes from Stanley Kubrick's Vietnam War film Full Metal Jacket were reconstructed as seamless loops, picturing both sides of the conflict scanning the same burning cityscape (from different points of view) . These scenes, representing Vietnam, filmed on the outskirts of London, and resembling real everyday images from present-day Iraq, create a matrix of myth and history. In this reconstructed cityscape, the smoldering structures become eternal flames and military conflict is reconsidered as a single historical continuum.

These scenes are transposed, via window-projections, onto the physical cityscape in Purified by Fire (pictured in the first post).
video

Purified By Fire, 2006
Video documentation and clips