Unsettling Sex, a video program drawn from Vtape’s Aboriginal Digital Access Project

Unsettling Sex, a video program drawn from Vtape’s Aboriginal Digital Access Project

A sensual revolt against the colonial legacy of heteropatriarchal scripts, Unsettling Sex, curated by John G. Hampton, presents six short films by new media artists Kent Monkman, James Diamond, Marnie Parrell and Ariel Smith. These artists disorient the stability of sexual identity through parodic and poignant presentations of pornographic real estate, vaudevillian power relations, cultural drag fetishism, faux-liberal apologism and diaristic sadomasochism.

Unsettling Sex was curated from the Vtape Aboriginal Digital Access Project. Funded by the Canada Council for the Arts, this initiative aims to digitize all works by Aboriginal artists in Vtape’s collection, as well as a selection of related documentaries focused on Aboriginal culture and activism. Newly digitized works are accessible through Vtape’s online preview site, a password-protected portal that provides temporary access for curators, programmers and institutions considering purchase or exhibition. To date, we have digitized and uploaded over 100 titles.

This exciting program will premiere at the imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival on Thursday October 18, 2012 at 4:00pm and will be accompanied by a thirty-minute talk given by artist/curator John G. Hampton on the decentring of identity in contemporary queer and Indigenous critiques of heteropatriarchal power.

The program will be available to view on demand at Vtape’s Video Gallery, October 18 – November 17, 2012.

The program:

Dance to Miss Chief, Kent Monkman

All glamour and sparkle-dust, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle returns in spectacular fashion for a stiletto-dance track celebration. Watch out Lady Gaga, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle is in da howz!

Mars-Womb-Man, James Diamond

Mars-Womb-Man is a companion to Diamond’s earlier film, The Man From Venus. In this film the artist finds answers for some of his old questions as he explodes binary concepts of man, woman, mother, and father.

I am the art scene starring Woman Polanski, James Diamond

Filmmaker James Diamond provocatively examines trans identity and manifestations of identity politics in what he describes as the “lowest of the low quality, high-art private service announcement.”

About Town, Marnie Parrell

Porn videos shot in the same mansion are merged, transformed and reborn as another form of consumerism: the real-estate showcase.

Dear Diary, Ariel Smith

A woman’s lustful fantasies descend into a dark, domestic hell in this surreal exploration of the pristine feminine archetype.

Target Girls, Ariel Smith

Ariel Smith`s Target Girls (2012) presents a familiar ritualistic sacrifice of the female body in the form of the magician`s –lovely assistant.” Target Girls recycles the aesthetics of film noir, vaudeville and German expressionism, recasting them as a tragicomic rebellion against Hollywood glamour and submission.

Still credit: Target Girls, Ariel Smith.

Aboriginal Digital Access Project, 2012 (pdf)