Limerick, Ireland
Sarah Hurl, Dark Roots, 2007, diptych/double video projection, 11 minutes 20 seconds

Sarah Hurl

b. 1982, Ireland

I have studied the multifaceted personality that is the femme fatale as a focal point in my work, in the context of my own artistic response to the inherent contradictions in the character and how her emotional appeal and impact is visualised. The duality of this female archetype, the opposites at play within her psyche, is the particular aspect of the femme fatale that I am most intrigued by. The effect of such a personality on others (and herself) is best demonstrated in silent film and in those films which rely on highly stylised physical and psychological acting, such as film noir. The use of stylised imagery and shadow to convey meaning is best exemplified by the character of the femme fatale, as the manipulation and mind games portrayed have as their genesis the utilisation of visual imagery to communicate through gesture, movement and body language. I have a particular interest in the notion of the cinema and the cinema in the gallery space. Films create a merging of realities and ‘other worlds’ for their viewers, and I believe these atmospheres, tensions, emotions and psychological senses are heightened greatly in the darkness of the cinema. I am interested in how film as a craft, in its theatrical and purely visual sense, can deliver to viewers a medium for contemporary art practice. Silent film, particularly Buster Keaton, and the cinematic characteristics of the film noir genre continue to inspire my practice.

(Text: too early for vacation catalogue, 2008)

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