Video Portraits

Jun 7, 2008

Media Artwork, Performance


Western Front


Video Portraits (2006–) by Scott Kildall is a single-channel video consisting of multiple “episodes” of two to three minutes that was screened as part of Manifestation :: Agitation.

In Video Portraits, Kildall solicited strangers to have their photo taken. Participants posed under the premise of a quick photographic moment, but without telling them, Kildall switches to video mode, recording them posing with fixed smiles and uncertain looks. Subjects ranged from gay men at a pride parade, to surfers in California, to taxi drivers in Brazil, to shoppers at a flea market, and to drunk people dressed in Santa Claus outfits.

Like conventional photographs, Kildall’s documents serve as travel souvenirs. Advancing the notion of portraiture into video form, Kildall draws links in this work to a cultural shift of a documentation-based world.

Kildall used Western Front as a live location to capture additional “video portraits” of attendees at Manifestation :: Agitation.

Curated by Natalie Loveless.

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Western Front is a non-profit
artist-run centre in Vancouver.

We acknowledge the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ílwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations as traditional owners of the land upon which Western Front stands.