Erika

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I ADORE YOU

A lyric singer is rehearsing a couplet from an opera song with her vocal coach. She stands in a domestic environment, alone in front of the camera. She repeats the same sentence to gain total control of her voice, the distortions of her face shows the effort she has to provide, only the hands of the teacher enter the frame to readjust the posture of his student. He touches her face, her belly, and she goes on singing. The sound of the piano he plays and his comments are punctuating the song “Hold your breath!”, “Lower your jaw” !

Before even knowing what it would be about exactly I was willing to film my friend Olivia, lyric singer having a class with her coach. As these lessons are private, it was for me a chance to witness a very intimate and also unusual situation between a master and his student. I came with my camera, and although the room was very small I tried to become as much invisible as possible, which was finally possible because this lesson required intense concentration.

I was struck by the awkwardness of the interaction between the teacher and the student. Although it is a completely natural way of working to them as they do it everyday, for me I could see a strange power play going on, mixing sexual ambiguity, love and professionalism. Moreover, the refrain of the love song “I adore you” that the singer is repeating many times is adding a connotation to this interaction. I thought that this simple gesture was raising questions on what is a relation between a master and a student.

YO LO CONOZCO

The video presents the reactions of inhabitants from a small Spanish village on photographic portraits of other inhabitants. Behind my camera, I am interacting with them, trying to ask questions in Spanish and trying to understand what they say. We can see the stack of pictures in their hands and their intimate surrounding in which they are being filmed. The video is a collection of stories and expressions that I gathered by filming my encounters with different people.

Wandering around in the streets of the small Spanish village, I took pictures of strangers I was encountering on the road. I quickly realized that many people would recognize the inhabitants they see on the photos and start telling anecdotes, stories or define their status in the village. I decided to meet people in their house, and asking to share what they knew about them in front of camera. Conversations started.

I was interested in showing the social interactions of people living in a small village and how they would share it with me, a stranger. I was not only interested in what the life of the people I photographed were but mostly in this action of making them talk about it , as a way to approach them and reveal something about their community and identity.