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To be framed

full HD video, 8:11, 2016
Commissioned by Sonsbeek 2016

While the film, which was shot on the premises of the former military base, was originally intended to reflect the topic of war, it eventually resulted in the topic of symbolic violence, embodied by the medium of film. The children’s acting is absolutely nonviolent, but it is obvious that it was enforced by the film crew. “How do we organize our lives? In the first place we need appreciation. We are not acknowledged by anyone. We must be acknowledged and perceived, it is not possible to be unheard,” says one of the children.

In the short movie ‘To Be Framed’, I deal with the presence of violence in our society. The presence may be hidden but is all the more ubiquitous and symbolic. I ask how it is possible to organise life if it is possible not to repeat and reproduce violence in a violent world. How can you behave without violence? Is violence simply a part of dialectic cycle of life and thus it’s impossible to step out of it? Child’s innocence seems to be a good starting point for such exploration. During the process of creating this film, I tried to understand violence that I cause to the others when I articulate my ideas, when I look for the language of communication in order to express myself. I am interested to what extent do we use behavioural patterns of the so called symbolic violence that are part of our speech and schematic behaviour.

I wanted the method to be part of the question since one cannot escape the cycle of violence by simply naming it and pointing at it. This would only spin another cycle of violence which is also difficult to understand since it’s difficult to decipher it. We use symbolic violence on one other every day.

Script:

How should we organise our lives? We’ll tell you what we should discuss.

First of all we need acknowledgement. Nobody acknowledges us. We have to be acknowledged, we need to be recognised, it’s not possible not to be heard.

We need to be appropriately represented, and for that we need a translation. A good translation is the first step towards acknowledgement.

We can’t make do with the condescension of others.

We’re invisible, nobody can see us, but we know we’re here.

We know how to translate for ourselves, but other translators have already found us and are trying to translate our innermost feelings themselves.

It’s a violent translation of our lives. And right now we have to live with it.
Everybody says that violence is bad, but we learn from it. We learn not to repeat violence. We are submerged in it, but thanks to it we know how to confront it. We emerge from violence and turn it against itself.

We pretend that we’re children, but that’s just your point of view, all that innocence.
We’re not what you think we are.

Now you’re confused.

We’ve acted out a number of situations for you, because we were asked to. You can learn all kind of things from it. We act as well as we can, we’re also learning from it.

Our translators have picked up a camera and are attempting something.

Watch out, learn about violence.