Video Installation, 2018
S-VHS, 60:00 min, loop, silent

“Sova is in a committed Relationship with Porn” feature in SOVA Magazine,
26 October 2018

Group Show “Obsolete Media” curated by Björn Speidel as part of the Annual Rundgang, Berlin University of the Arts
18–23 July 2018

Featuring: Valentin Braun
Camera assistant: Charlotte Hannah Peters

Special thanks: Niklas Goldbach & Silke Gutjahr

“POSE” is an installation that explores and contextualizes pornography in a performative setup. From a psychoanalytical point of view pornography is understood simultaneously as a medium of consumption, connecting with the viewer through various screens and devices, as well as a production of desires. The video-installation “POSE” looks at mainstream pornography as an apparatus that serves a pre-constructed vision of what should be felt — critically questioning pornography’s influence and effects on sexual identities. Nowadays pornography is being censored by the hegemonic distribution of power, therefore limiting the access to a multiplicity of positions on explicit sex.

In “POSE” Valentin Braun, the face of new wave gay porn, is forced to follow the artist’s instructions. His body is directed like a marionette. Simultaneously the artist takes the role of the director of photography, controlling two studio cameras on tripods. New framings and compositions are constantly created through body and camera positions and by changing focal lengths. The performance is framed by a single uninterupted take of 60 minutes which exactly maches the maximum recording limit of the S-VHS tapes. The lighting of the scene follows the basic rules of a technical set-up in mainstream porn productions. While the camera is constantly composing new images and scenes, it is sometimes showing light stands, cables and video equipment, revealing the filmmaking process.

Staged body compositions are narrated through strange and deconstructed poses inspired by performance art, fashion photography, and figurative paintings. In various video sequences of the installation the body is being highly fragmented by the observative cameras. One body part covers another. Some parts seem to build its own narrative and architecture. The camera is set to full-automatic mode which causes uncontrolled color shifts from a blue or yellow tinted picture through drastic changes in the white balance settings. Randomly the video begins to jiggle and to lose focus, consciously playing with a palette of technical inconsistencies and failures.  

The performance which was only recorded a single time is presented as an unedited and uncut full-take via the two original S-VHS tapes. The tapes are simultaneously played from video recorders placed on top of the television screens, played in a loop while all technichal means of the production process are made transparent.

Single Video Stills

Split Screen Video Stills