Fountain 1998

KOSLOFF, Laresa

Registration number

1726901

Artist/maker

KOSLOFF, Laresa

Title

Fountain

Production date

1998

Medium

Super 8 transferred to video

Dimensions (H x W x D)

0:48 looped duration

Credit line

Purchased, 2016
City of Melbourne Art and Heritage Collection
© Courtesy of the artist and Sutton Gallery

Keywords

Laresa Kosloff, Fountain, 1998, Melbourne, film

Summary

Laresa Kosloff has a keen interest in performance, the human body and the body’s capacity for agency, particularly as an intervention into social spaces and activities. Super 8 film and video are two favoured media through which she considers the various representational strategies for figuring the body.

The three Super 8 works held in the Art and Heritage Collection – ‘St Kida Road, ‘Stock Exchange’ and ‘Fountain’ – record social interactions in public places, documenting very specific human activities against the built fabric of the city. Super 8 works against the familiar spatial and temporal anchoring of the moving image, its flat, grainy, monochromatic character encouraging us to consider the imagery more conceptually as exercises in thought and analysis than as narrative representations. The distanciation the medium creates also, perhaps, prompts us to reflect on our own role and processes in the act of looking.

Shot near Southbank’s Crown Casino, on the forecourt to the Yarra River, the 0.48-minute looped work ‘Fountain’ silently records children as they run through and play in the fountain. This is not the height of summer; sodden children wear jeans and sweatshirts, hoodies or sleeved shirts, and one even travels on his roller blades. Spurts of water rise and fall, each child trying to anticipate and outsmart the random drenching spurts. The children are watched by sitting and standing adults, their presence legitimising this spirited intervention into the usually non-participatory function of a public fountain. The kids seem to reclaim the fountain – they call the shots – expanding its possibilities as they transform it into a theatre of fun.