WEEKEND | Examining the ordinary through performance art

Inside 36 Edgewood, Charlie Kelly ’14 steps into a bathtub full of milk à la Claudette Colbert in “The Sign of the Cross.” The lights are dimmed and a semicircle of onlookers gathers around the spectacle. Food coloring drips from a bunch of hollow eggs that hang above the tub as Kelly watches television, washes himself and has a “routine” nervous breakdown.

The performance, which took place last Friday, was filmed by Seth Thompson ’14. The 17-minute product, a clip called “Cleansing,” can now be viewed as part of the exhibit “Daily Routines,” a project by Thomas and Jaime Sunwoo ’14. The exhibition showcases a total of 4 videos by the pair and displays the site www.fleetingmemoriesvideo.com, developed by Harry Yu ’14, which reels written memories and pictures uploaded by site users at a rate of 30 images per second.

The exhibition aims to examine ordinary activities that people don’t usually stop to consider, Sunwoo said. Such unremarkable pastimes are the “most revealing things when it comes to [American] culture,” he said.

In one clip, entitled “Shopping,” a girl is wheeled in a shopping cart through a New Haven street while shiny pieces of paper and hangers fly into her arms. The video was filmed backwards — initially, the cart was wheeled backwards and the items flew out of the girl’s arms — and then reversed to produce the final product. The technique is somewhat trite, but the video is nonetheless a pleasure to watch: the colors are fresh and bright and the objects are shiny, a stand-in for the affluence of American Society.

A recipient of the Saybrook College Creative and Performing Arts Award, “Daily Routines” will be on view until April 23 in Maya’s Room in Silliman College.

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