Home > 360MC Research & Development > 360MC – 25/11/10 (The Wilson Sisters)

360MC – 25/11/10 (The Wilson Sisters)

The lecture for this week was online.   We had to watch the lecture that the Wilson Sisters gave at the Architectural Association in London.  This lecture comprised of the sisters talking about their work and how they produced it.  This was a very interesting lecture to watch as it gave me an insight into what ideas i could pursue for my final major project.

The Wilson Sisters

Jane and Louise Wilson

(Photo courtesy of http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2009/feb/18/artist-week-jane-louise-wilson)

Louise and Jane Wilson are twin sisters who are UK born film-makers (who started out in art and not media!) and use a range of techniques for their film pieces working with video projections, photographs and even incorporate 3D sculptures alongside their videos.

Some of their pieces include:

 ‘Stasi City’ (1997)


“A psychological exploration of the mute, abandoned architectural spaces of the Stasi, the former headquarters of the East German secret police. For five minutes, a video camera slowly and deliberately pans through the building’s hallways and interrogation rooms, invoking the long history of abuses that took place there, as a human figure floats gently upwards unpinned from the laws of gravity. The four channel video installation is shown on opposite corners of the enclosed installation space, reinforcing a sense of confinement and surveillance.” 

A majority of their work is based around ‘the human experience’ and includes aspects such as “The power of the unconscious mind, collective anxieties and phobias, arouses unwanted memories, and reveals things which are usually repressed.”

(Description & pictures Courtesy of http://empac.rpi.edu/events/2010/spring/zerogravity/catalog/wilson/)

‘Unfolding the Aryan Papers’ (2009) –

Clock watching: Jane and Louise Wilson?s 'Unfolding the Aryan Papers'


(Photo courtesy of http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/art/reviews/jane-and-louise-wilson-unfolding-the-aryan-papers-talbot-rice-gallery-edinburgh-1774509.html)

This piece is based around an unmade Stanley Kubrick film which only had a script and some pre-production photographs that are incorporated into the installation piece.  They  use an actress called Kristina; who would of been the lead in the unmade Kubrick film and in particular looks at the relatiponship between herself and the costume designer Esma who both share some common elements in relation to the Holocaust…

 How they incorporate memory into their work…

Within their pieces they use ‘Memory’ to signify a new meaning behind subjects and places such as ‘Stasi City’ which (as described above) gives an insight into this historical and disturbing location that holds very disturbing memories for the people who were held there under difficult circumstances.

‘Unfolding the Aryan Papers’ also looks into memory by using (as once again described above) an unmade Kubrick film and revisits the un-made film and its main character, who is re-visiting her past in relation to a film that she didn’t get to star in. 

Its the ‘re-visiting things for a second time’ that lays the foundations within the Wilson Sisters work and even if we as the audience aren’t ‘re-visiting’ a place or situation that we have been in before, we can have a feeling of being placed somewhere that has some historical past and has memories (good or bad) hidden away within itself.

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