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Geoffrey Garrison

*1978 in Atlanta, Georgia USA, lives in Berlin GER
Studied at Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht NED, at Cooper Union, New York USA and at Staatlichen Hochschule für Bildende Künste Städelschule, Frankfurt GER


Exhibitions [selection]:


2009 Videonale 12, Kunstmuseum Bonn GER

2008 The Gemini Show, Pampero Apartment Berlin GER
         Freunde und Bekannte, Sparwasser HQ, Berlin GER

2007 Videonale 11, Kunstmuseum Bonn GER
         Pimp My Walls, Apartment Stefan Schuster Berlin GER




Geoffrey Garrison [Videonale.11]


Geoffrey Garrison [Videonale.11] x

The Cut, 2005/2006, 20:00 min, sound, color [Videonale.11]

A woman´s face reduced to garish red lips displays all the symptoms of hysteria as described at the end of the 19th century by Viennese doctor Joseph Breuer, a colleague of Sigmund Freud. So begins Geoffrey Garrison´s video work The Cut, which draws on the popular biopic Freud: The Secret Passion [1962], directed by John Huston. Six sequences which repeatedly overlap explore the problem of how history is portrayed, showing how fiction steps in to fill any gaps in the storyline. The fact that each actor plays several different roles makes this weave of quoted and original material even more difficult to unravel - the only constant is the figure of director John Huston. The figure of actor Montgomery Clift, for example, who played Sigmund Freud in Huston´s film, discusses sleep problems with a fictive Marilyn Monroe - his film partner in The Misfits [1961]. The director character is questioned by the FBI on his relationship to communism. In numerous additional references from movie history, the video not only explores the conflicts involved in fulfilling the expectations of both producer and filmgoers, but also frames a whimsical view of how a Hollywood film is made.

Johanna Zwanzig


Geoffrey Garrison [Videonale.12] x

An Infinite Night, 2008, 20:00 min, sound , colour [Videonale.12]

In his video An Infinite Night, Geoffrey Garrison presents a fictitious B-movie remake of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s The Arabian Nights. He shifts the story from The Thousand and One Nights to a science-fiction scenario featuring a dystopian American society—a society that has turned negative—yet only several of this film’s scenes even exist. The video starts with photographs of the Chihuahua Desert in Texas, which Garrison uses as the setting for the film. Two voice-overs discuss the making of the film, introducing individual scenes. The aesthetic expectations, previously built up by image, music, and dialogue, stand in contrast to what are minimalist film scenes, each of which takes place in an empty room; they are primarily characterized by dialogue critical of society and the experiences of the protagonists. In between scenes, the two narrators continue to add to the plot of the film. This results in a separation of the individual elements of the film, so that viewers have to assemble them into a whole in their imaginations. The levels of reality are also blurred, since Pasolini’s film is told from different perspectives by the narrators, who, along with the protagonists, reflect on the theme of the film presented in the video. On all levels, there is an awareness of the appropriation of the source material. The presentation of the story thus breaks through all limitations, whether narrative, visual, or logical. It becomes an endless tale, An Infinite Night.

Frederik Ohlms

Geoffrey Garrison