Bernard Gigounon : Filmmaker


Looking Down

“Cinema, Cinema, Cinema. The three things that can make us see the world like we want to see it, the way it is and the way it can be”, Alfred Hitchcock once said. Precisely this perceptual ambiguity, the multiple layers of reality involved in the moving, time-based image, incited Bernard Gigounon to start using the video medium. Before that moment, after his studies at the Department of sculpture in Ensav-La Cambre (Brussels), he mostly made sculptures based on traditional materials like metal and wood. But even then his work was based on a fascination for the tiny, apparently trivial aspects of our everyday lives, from which he tries to draw magic and poetry.

It has been said that cinema is in essence a special effect. The video work of Gigounon reduces that notion to its minimal essence: cinema as an illusion, created by the manipulation of images in time. He does not create this effect with advanced, multi-dimensional digital technologies, but rather through simple, transparent magic, referring in several respects to the optic fantasies and the ‘persistence of vision’ techniques from the pre-cinematic age. But this is not about the simulation of reality through optical illusions, or the creation of immersive ‘scripted spaces’, but rather amazement itself, purposely allowing oneself to get carried away by the unreal, the surreal, the deviant. In an age when our outlook on the world is constantly mediatized and determined by all kinds of special effects, Gigounon carries us back to a proto-cinema: the experience of a train journey, the amazing effect of a cuckoo’s clock, the projection of a magic lantern. He uses video as an instrument to recreate everyday life, to tilt our perspective through a “suspension of belief” into an enchanted reality.

[Extract : Bernard Gigounon Website : Essay]

Bernard Gigounon : Website

Bernard Gigounon : Vimeo

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