Friday, 18 June 2010

Tacita Dean on Boots

"Berlin Project was the most personal work I had ever done up t that point. I think the reason why I am getting a bit more autobiographical, ant The Uncles is totally autobiographical, is because I've moved to Berlin and suddenly it has given me permission to make work about England, because prior to that I would travel the world for my subject matter. It is something that I hadn't noticed - the autobiography in Boots, 2003, is subliminal when you encounter the work, but when you read my texts yo then see the connection and Boots's association to my family. Berlin Project includes Boots - I interviewed him about his father's life in Berlin - basically Boots had this legacy of being the son of a minor traitor. He was born in London but lived in Munich and Berlin as a boy during the whole Nazi period." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, pp.568-569)

Maria Walsh I saw Boots in Paris at the Musée d'art moderne de la Ville de Paris. How is it set up at RIBA?  
Tacita Dean The RIBA room that we have has three doors so it absolutely invites Boots. Also the building is so much like Casa de Serralves, that same period. It is from the thirties and a bit fascist in a way, so it is a perfectvenue. I wanted to show it here at Firth Street as it is the principal work I've made in the last year but needed more space." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, p.570)

Maria Walsh Why are there three versions of Boots?
Tacita Dean I wanted to use Boots's perfect ated urbanity, that in some ways he carried in his body that period of western culture when many were polyglot and somehow Europe was less divided in a strage sense even though now we have the European Community. Then, people would freely move between cultures and be multilingual." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, p.571)

Tacita Dean "I wanted to film him in all these different languages without knowing I was going to do three versions... What I imposed on it was obviously the language seperation but also that he would take a different walk around the villa for each version. So in the English version he goes into the study, in the French, the dining room, in the German, the library and then they all go upstairs to the pink bathroom... what i love is that he changes with the language, which is so beautiful. In the German version, he is a bit fascist in a way, isn't he? Whereas the French version is much more romantic, the English is very wistful." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, p.571)

Maria Walsh Boots's cahracter doesn't take over the building in the way that a character usually dominates place in mainstream fictional narratives.
Tacita Dean They both have parallel stories. An empty house of tha beauty is poignant anyway and Boots becomes an empty house also to some extent." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, p.571)

Tacita Dean "People's perception of sound is extraordinary. It is so muted by image...
I put in everything. I always record sound live and collect sound while I am in the location, so most of it is recorded in situ but was just placed differently. It is another ingredient that adds to the visual because of course image in 16mm is recorded mute. And that for me is one of the primal seperations between video, digital media and film - the muteness of film, of cinema, and that everything has to be added." (Dean, in Walsh, 2007, p.571)

Walsh, M. (2004) "Tacita Dean" in Bickers, P. & Wilson, A. (eds.) (2007) Talking Art: Interviews with Artists since 1976. London: Art Monthly and Ridinghouse. pp.567-573.