Video

J. Lo (High/Low) - version one: Missy Elliott

Alissa Firth-Eagland

2002, 04:50 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 225.03

J Lo Hi Lo – version one: Missy Elliott is a single channel video which highlights the collapse of high and low culture that seems to be occurring at a rapid pace in western society. "The Cell" is a blockbuster Hollywood film which plundered the concepts of many contemporary artists to further the plot (Stelarc, Damien Hirst, Floria Sigismondi, Pierre et Gilles, Matthew Barney, etc). Stealing the clips from the movie that appropriate from some of these artists, J Lo Hi Lo exemplifies a direct relationship between art production and mass culture production. The scenes are left to their full length, unmodified but for an added text layer which footnotes the works.
The cyclical nature of a cultural product, from being underground and cutting edge, to being accepted by the mainstream, to becoming incorporated into that mainstream is identified. In ‘version one: Missy Elliott’, the specifics of cultural ownership are further complicated by the unconnected, yet somehow logical soundtrack ‘4 my people’ by Missy Elliott.

J Lo Hi Lo –version two also highlights the collapse of high and low culture that seems to be occurring at a rapid pace in western society, but is more suited to large scale projection. Again taking clips from the movie "The Cell", J Lo exemplifies a direct relationship between art production and mass culture production. The cyclical nature of a cultural product, from being underground and cutting edge, to being accepted by the mainstream, to becoming incorporated into that mainstream is identified. In ‘version two’ a haunting background image hosts the clips taken from "The Cell" while they are juxtaposed with the actual artwork referenced in the film. The result is less direct than version one, but somehow more disturbing.

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