LIVING TRUTHFULLY UNDER IMAGINARY CIRCUMSTANCES (Kirschner/Panos, 2011)
33 mins, Format: 2 Channel HD Projection & 2 Video Monitors
Living Truthfully Under Imaginary Circumstances is a multi-channel video installation that explores the acting exercises developed by Sanford Meisner.
Meisner's techniques paradoxically deploy an unnatural training routine of intense repetition and observational feedback to stimulate 'authentic' emotion and spontaneity in performance. They remain highly influential on American cinema and drama today.
The installation looks at the relationship between drama and performance, ideology and subjectivity, combining footage of young actors working with Meisner’s exercises with material from the history of theatre and cinema. It interrogates the the meaning of 'emotional truthfulness' in post-modern naturalism and its blurring of the distinction between dramatic artifice and seemingly 'primal', 'human' impulses, whilst simultaneously foregrounding the hypnotic, open-ended, and affective force of Meisner's method.