Jeremy Shaws practice focuses on altered states in particular transcendence and catharsis through dance, religion, drugs, yoga/meditation.
‘Liminals’ is a parafiction done in cinema verite, a documentary style which plays with the notion of a camera/documentation capturing the truth. The language in the film is manipulated during the editing so English is no longer spoken or understood it is then overlaid the subtitles of a supposed non-fiction yet sci-fi story which happens in the future, in a time where faith and religion has become extinct. Explain all the magic out of the spiritual and humans became disinterested and what was used in its place was a for a virtual reality which caused the brain to entropy. And as a result part of the brain that humans use for faith is dying just causing humans to become extinct. It brings up ideas about belief and Faith being an integral part of human evolution and Society it suggests that cognitive beast’s such as us rely on faith to survive Enter interact in the film the subjects have the idea to reengage with various extreme practices in order to push humanity to evolve past near extinction. The film changes from black and white to 36mm mono sound and progresses to stereo to surround sound to technicolor digital and then breaks down to something that looks like a glitch through a technique called data moshing to simulate a cosmic trip. Faith and belief/ religion and the need to believe in something as an integral part of the human psyche and evolutionary path without belief all is lost, faith gives life purpose. I think its interesting that he uses time in his work, as it enables the audience to disconnect from the peace as if its fantasy because if its a non-fiction yet sci-fi set in the future, it has no immediate threat and can be accepted more readily as such and slip subliminally into the viewers mind.
Other works include documenting 30 people in a pseudo science experiment setting taking DMT and trying to describe what they saw
and photographs of people in religious states of rapture overlaid with lenses to mimic the way altered states are visualized and portrayed film and media, the kind of kaleidoscopic view as if looking through the eyes of those affected.
I really like how Shaw presents transcendence, I first saw his work at the Venice biennale last year, and thought in particular the data moshing is a great disorientating way of relating these altered states back to the viewer. I can also see his idea of the collective experience through dance and drugs in relation to the collective mind, universal connection the idea that we are all one interconnected collective unconscious. His use of time and a cross over of fiction/non fiction in Liminals it is perhaps something id like to explore, as I find that people dont even want to fathom what I am suggesting in some of my work because it tends to challenge their way of being, so they put up barriers refuse to remain open.
I had been toying with the idea of creating a Cult which I can then instill my ideas into and actually I have seen a film called ‘The Sound Of My Voice’ which is based on someone coming from the future and starting a cult. I think this becomes more readily accepted as 1. Its obvious fiction as no one could possibly come from the future…Right? 2. It takes the pressure off having to understand the ideas as its knowledge from the future, you dont need to know it yet. 3. As its a cult it can be treat as an other… ‘Its just a silly cult’ and can be ignored in part but also explored safely from ones personal barriers.