Siouxzi Connor (formerly Mernagh) is an award-winning cross-media artist born in Sydney and currently based in Berlin for the third time. She is a former film/ research fellow of the ICI Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry, having undertaken a fellowship concerning the spatial, temporal and sexual tensions within psychoanalytic films and subsequently completing an experimental narrative film titled ‘The Dangers’ as a direct response to her research. Siouxzi has produced provocative and sensual work in moving-image, installation, photography, performance and experimental writing in Sydney, London and Berlin.
She has recently undertaken several solo exhibitions of her work: ‘Peep’ for Alaska Projects, Sydney; ‘Cabinet of Peep’ for EXPO, Berlin and for 18m Galerie, Berlin, featuring performance, video and installation. This follows on from several group shows in Sydney, Melbourne and Berlin, and screenings in galleries and festivals with her films ‘Exit’ and ‘The Dangers’. She has also recently completed her second novel, ‘The Peep Show’, from which extracts are featured in her solo shows. Her first novel, ‘White Tales’ has several extracts published with Turia & Kant (Wien/ Berlin) as part of the volume “Tension/ Spannung” within the series ‘Cultural Inquiry’.
In the dark, dark room
‘In the dark, dark room’ is an ambitious cross-media experiment involving academic research methods; a performative installation; preparation for an experimental narrative film; and preparation for a resulting novel. Each of these works hinges on the exploration of the proverbial space of a cabin in a forest. The project, an intersection between art and scholarship, marks a significant amalgamation of Siouxzi’s key thematic and stylistic concerns since the beginning of her practice. It is at once a dynamic shift from her work created within the ICI Berlin’s core project on tension in addition to being in close alignment with the Institute’s current focus – ‘Wholes Which Are Not One’.
The three characters within the project, Red, Black and White, are indeed representations of both parts and wholes of a conceptual narrative space: they exist, simultaneously as defined parts and as a collective whole within the cabin in the forest, resistant to traditional notions of binary oppositions. Their existences are at once reliant on each other for survival and the very thing that threatens each of their individual existences.
A Subconscious Narrative Short Film
ICI Project 2008-09
The Dangers, an 18 minute film, refers to inner tensions of personal, particularly female, identity and the external manifestation of these tensions in the forms of sexual expression and propensity to violence. It expresses this upholding an assumption that time is fluid and malleable. My fascination, which I believe is evident in ‘The Dangers’, focuses on the spiralling tensions between desire and jouissance. It is my aim in the future as a filmmaker to continue to focus on evoking this relationship both within my films themselves and hopefully as an audience reaction to the films. The question could be asked: what are the aesthetics of this relationship?
‘The Dangers’ achieves the aim of pushing the ideologies of the subconscious narrative film to the extreme. This process was aided by developing its psychological and philosophical possibilities over the course of the ICI Fellowship, bounded by the overarching concept of ‘Tension’. I believe The Dangers, as aimed, has emerged as a new form of narrative film: the subconscious narrative film. I hope now to push this conceptualisation further through the feature I am currently working on, set in Berlin and entitled ‘Peep Show’.