Catalogue > Un extrait vidéo au hasard

Phillip Warnell

I first saw the light

Film expérimental | 16mm | couleur | 12:0 | Royaume-Uni, 0 | 2012

I first saw the light channels the vestige of Joseph Carey Merrick?s surviving output. Better known as The Elephant Man, he produced a two-page autobiography, sold to those attending a freak show in which he was displayed in victorian London. The inter-titled text is coupled with stark sequences of a model church he constructed, now sealed within a glass and ebony container, together forming the basis for this poignant, silent film. A reminder of Merrick?s profound humanity in the face of such extreme adversity, the film also serves as a footnote to David Lynch?s feature film, in which the model is employed as a central motif and metaphor for Merrick?s psychological and emotional fluctuations.

Phillip Warnell produces films channelling the circumstances, thoughts and character of extraordinary subjects. The work is concerned with the exploration of, and curiosity with, ideas around bodies and environments. Thinking through film, his work explores an extra-sensory, pre-scientific world, infused with invisible, supra-organic phenomena. The premise for his work locates the body as an axis or point of orientation, around which can be hosted a series of investigations and transformations, into both the human and animal corpus, its biology, psychology and chemistry. A filmmaker, academic and artist, Phillip Warnell presents his work in a range of contexts and guises: including live performance pieces, time-based work, image and text. His recent cinematic work has included ?The Girl with X-ray Eyes? and ?Outlandish: Strange Foreign Bodies?, made in collaboration with Jean-Luc Nancy. Recent presentations of his work include a solo exhibition at The South London Gallery, London (Sept, 2012); Locarno Film Festival (2012); FNC Montreal (2012), Loop Barcelona (2011); CPH-Dox (2010); FID Marseille (2009/8), with exhibitions at Matts Gallery, London (2005) and 300m3, Gothenburg (2008).