How hard is hard? What is our mortal capacity?
Artist, Mel O’Callaghan explores these questions through her dramatic Video Art currently on display at NGV Australia. Resistance and endurance is a rite of passage each of us will pass through eventually, a relative condition at every age.
Ensemble within the NGV space is cinematic, with life-size actors in a war-like water-battle. O’Callaghan uses the violence of the force to explore existence. It is when we let go , that life spirals and the body is swept away.
‘What a single body is capable of when enduring a voluntarily experience of duress is a powerful thing to behold’ Callaghan
Australian O’Callaghan lives in Paris and gave a live performance at the Serralves, taking it out of the dark theatre space and into the light of day.
O’Callaghan considers the body as a vehicle of ‘imposed labour’. The resistance of a ballet dancer perhaps or an underpaid worker forcing him/herself out of bed? Consider the Soldier preparing for death, or worse. Each day we battle, not to win, just to remain standing.
‘To fall, to begin again which is where the virtuous aspect comes into violence. It’s not being purely negative but rather a creative force’ O’Callaghan
Her work also relates to the Political and Economic climax point that is coming into focus.
‘…. those mounting feelings of deep despair that force acts of extremism’
Now showing within the perfect space, the deconstructive architectural venue at Fed. Square.
based on interview with Louise Paramor NGV