Alix Pearlstein (b. 1962)
Two Women (2:20 Min. Color. Sound. 2000)
Forsaken (10:45. Color. Sound. 2003)
Crash (7:50. Color. Sound. 2004)
All Day and a Night (12:00. Color. Sound. 2005)
Alix Pearlstein's performance based videos subject highly charged narratives to minimalist structures - at once pressuring emotionality and artifice. Characterized by deadpan humor and a streamlined aesthetic, her approach is direct and intimate. Pearlstein's earliest videos, in which she appears most often as performer, exhibit a deliberately low-tech, grunge sensibility that is countered by the cool, stylized elegance of her later works.
Pearlstein's recent works, featuring ensemble groups of actors, function as abstract dramas, which operate in a realm between the theatrical and the cinematic. They examine character, behavior, motivation, relationships and group dynamics. Their circular schemes focus on power plays, hierarchies, competitions and interventions into the status quo. The exploration of performative approaches, often shifting within one piece from task based action, to stagy theatricality, or method-like naturalism, is conceived to conspire with the affective space between camera and subject - exposing the contingency of the performance. Often set in an indeterminate void, an article of clothing, the inflection of a single word or a gesture, the incidents on the edge of the central action deliver crucial clues to time, place and feeling, distilling the scene to it's psychological core.
Pearlstein's work has been widely exhibited internationally. Selected one person exhibitions include The Kitchen NYC, The MIT List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge MA; Salon 94 NYC; Lugar Commum, Lisbon; Greenberg Van Doren Gallery NYC; The Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, Postmasters Gallery and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Selected group exhibitions & screenings include EV+A: Annual Exhibition of Visual Art, Limerick, Ireland; PFA, Berkeley; The Center for Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv; SMAK Ghent; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, NYC; ICA Philadelphia; Whitney Museum of American Art, NYC; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, D.C; Stedjelijk Museum, Amsterdam and The Museum of Modern Art, NYC. She lives and works in New York City. www.alixpearlstein.com
Alix Pearlstein's videos can be purchased or rented from EAI