Arts, Tarts and Politics

Culture and Media

I have been neglecting my blog lately, mostly because of long work schedules and also because of having to go away to Paris for the Paris Underground Film Festival, where two of my films were screening. Well, Paris was fun, they seemed to actually enjoy my films, instead of shifting in their chairs with dismayed incomprehension. Other than the screenings the rest of the visit was spent in eating, drinking and conversation and envying their marvelous public transportation system.

We spent most of our days walking around the streets and visiting spots like Balzac’s failed printing establishment and a cafe with a post revolutionary guillotine. The only major museum visit was to Napolean’s tomb, which is a bombastic site, with friezes glorifying him as the destroyer of chaos, the giver of laws, and the centralizer of administration, looking like quite the Caesar. Our other major quest was to find the exhibit of the dog he had on St. Helena, stuffed for posterity, and Napolean’s death mask. I shot lots of footage of all this death pageantry, don’t know what I will do with it yet.

Anyway, the first thing I found on coming back was this hilarious political sex ad video, via Tom Tomorrow. Late night sex ads were the only thing I liked about American TV when first came to the States. Their harsh lighting and iconic qualities were very similar to the religious photo novellas the nuns made us read when I was attending a convent school in India, so it must have been sheer nostalgia on my part. The use of cheap video effects gave those ads an abstract quality that was distancing and made an interesting juxtaposition with the cloying intimacy of the voices. Anyhow the Lie Girls have used those techniques to very good effect.