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In Opaque we see two performers of unknown gender and origin who are lingering in an empty and abandoned swimming-pool. In a particular scene, they recite a text by Jean Genet about a “declared enemy,” and re-stage a film scene from an underground political group from 1970. The props recall an anti-war demonstration and contrast with the set of a drag performance. Using veils, curtains, camouflage, or smoke, the performers seem to demand what Edouard Glissant called “the Right of Opacity.” People (and probably other creatures and objects) have a density, thickness, or fluidity, which escapes knowledge. When something is appropriated by knowledge, it gets revealed, uncovered, or unveiled. The claim for opacity can be a strategy to refuse giving information about our political work, our origins, our bodily conditions or our sexuality.
The work of Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz often revisits materials from the past, referring to unrepresented or illegible moments of queerness in history. They combine different forms of media, while simultaneously incorporating materials from historical archives of photography and film. Embodiments are shown which are able to cross different times, but also to draw relations between these different times, thus revealing possibilities for a queer futurity. At the same time, lines of desire and fetishization are incorporated.
Pauline Boudry, born in 1972 in Switzerland, and Renate Lorenz, born in 1963 in Germany, are filmmakers, photographers, and artists. Their works investigates questions of sexual identity and gender roles from forgotten moments of history. In them, they combine music, performance, and video, as well as historical documents. Their works have been shown internationally, among others at Les Complices, Zürich, at the Centre d´Art in Geneva, at Ellen de Bruijne Projects, Amsterdam, at Swiss Institute, New York, at Temporären Kunsthalle Berlin, as well as in the 54th Biennale in Venice. They live and work in Berlin.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org www.boudry-lorenz.de
Cast: Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Werner Hirsch
Format: single-channel video installation, QuickTime ProRes, Colour
Running time: 10 min