session, 2004
installation view dual channel dvd projection
dimensions variable


Session, is a large multifaceted installation that combines an audio track with multiple video projections. The work deals with the dynamics of a relationship as heard and seen through a couple's therapy session. The audio consists of extracts taken from a real conversation in a therapist's office. The patients’ answers are removed so only the questions of the therapist are heard. The psychoanalytical speech of the professional humorously contradicts itself as being both ambiguous and yet oddly specific. The video projections consist of images taken of the therapist’s feet during the appointment and of the two patients as they sit uncomfortably through the session.

Screen 1 is a visual of the therapist’s feet fidgeting about in a generic gray setting that includes a gray carpeting and the foot of a gray arm chair. The color coincidentally matches the common working palette of other collaborative videos by Diana Shpungin and Nicole Engelmann. The therapist’s feet movement animates her conversation and change based on her dialogue. Dissolves of the foot footage overlap the passing of time and exaggerate the repetitiveness of the experience. The therapist’s face remains anonymous while only her voice is revealed to the viewer.

In Screen 2, two women dressed in identical gray uniforms sit on a white leather love seat. The blonde and brunette, Diana and Nicole, sit side by side in front of a nondescript concrete wall. The setting alludes to a therapist’s council room, but the highly stylized vacant set clues to the viewer that the couch is merely a prop that helps to insinuate a setting. The women acting as patients sit silently through the never-ending session. Although they do not speak aloud they communicate non-verbally through body language. Fluctuating through a series of expressions: stoic, solemn, distant and supportive. The women’s voices remain anonymous while their faces are revealed.

Audio: What was said and who said what? The audio component is comprised only of the therapist’s voice that rambles on eternally. Diana and Nicole’s original responses have been removed from the audio component thus expecting the viewer to interpret the original conversation. The councilor’s suggestions are vague. The conversation is humorous by its generic and rambling nature as the therapist questions and analyses her processes of therapy and the conversation she has with herself.

Installation: Screen 1 and Screen 2 will be projected within a single space at different proportions. Their size and positioning will be determined upon installation taking into consideration the architectural character of the space. Each installation will be site-specific. Speakers will provide ambient sound to fill the space.

all images © Diana Shpungin & Nicole Engelmann 2000-2007