Exploring a Small Canyon
We can convey that we are happy or disappointed but the true reasons why, including the layers of memory and experience that influence the ‘why’, are only graspable with extended and often impossible explanation. Mike Marshall’s minimal video work Exploring a Small Canyon conveys the complexity of the most simple of concepts with which we must deal regularly and imperceptibly. Standing in a small canyon, the artist yells out “Yes”, which returns in an expected echo. Eventually the “Yes” is countered with “No” and the two words become intertwined. The same occurs with “Hello” and “Goodbye”, and before we are aware, these basic concepts are engaged in a complex struggle that would normally remain hidden from the outside, but that we all recognise as common occurrences in our quotidian thought processes. The intensity of the simplest decisions we make is often taken for granted, and Marshall’s work literally liberates these processes and reveals the limited power of language in our noble attempt to communicate ourselves to others.
(Jan Schuijren, Angela Plohman: Spuren des Nächsten)
Mike Marshall, GB 2003, video, 3min
Courtesy the artist