Corrèze is a department in the Limousin region. Champseix is a hamlet near Bugeat, a small town with 800 inhabitants. Viam Lake is about 5 kilometres equidistant from both. The diagonal of emptiness, a DV camera, at the end of 2016.
At first, it resembles an audiovisual report by some country policeman. The images, gathered in a mix of indifference and method then edited in the order they were filmed, document what we are permitted to see in the middle of the diagonal of nothingness, in a nowhere place in the French countryside, which as the signposts indicate is in Correze, near Bugeat, a village of 803 souls, not one of whom appears in the film. Lanes, dead wood, sunken paths, rubble, church towers, rusting metal, milestones, abandoned cars, closed shutters, “For Sale” signs on houses that no one buys. All around: a silence of barking and passing cars, under the grating noise of the DV camera’s catarrhal motor. Sometimes, we also hear the cough of the camera eye. As the procession of images advances (tac, tac, each cut is a blink, or a silent gunshot), what draws our attention is the eye, more than the nothingness that it captures in still lifes. The eye of an anxious robot on holiday, or now retired from the world. Perhaps the eye of La Région centrale by Michael Snow, forgotten in Canada, which he fled, pirouettes, finding refuge forty years later in Bugeat, where the final reflexes of this useless and stubborn image-poacher mechanically blinks his eye. And when, halfway through the film, amidst the barking and the cars, a clanking piece by John Cage slips in (or is it the soundtrack of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre?), it is as though the robot-eye is using the dead wood and old iron roofs to hold a little pagan fete all for himself. There, he seems truly happy – he has found himself a paradise.
PRINT SOURCE: Hendrik Hegray, firstname.lastname@example.org
Hendrik Hegray (born in 1981 in Limoges) is a plastic artist. He has been working with drawing, music, performance, photo, video, sculpture and publishing since the late 1990s. His film work began in 2014 after being invited to the Ricard Foundation Prize, where he presented Cul en feu / Je croyais que la société avait disparu. Eight other videos followed. In 2016, he obtained a CNAP research scholarship for his film project, Implantation, filmed in the Agricultural Museum in Cairo and presented at the Escougnou-Cetraro Gallery in 2018.
- PRODUCTION : Hendrik Hegray