You wanted me a virgin, I wanted you less dumb (stupid) !
Beware of people who dream as if you are caught in the dream of others, you are fucked up!

1) We are prisoners of our image of the other (the stranger, the poor, the other sex, the revolutionary, the poet…).
2) We are free every time we refuse to get caught in the dream of the other (the fascist, racist, sexist, moraliser, religious…).
3) It is time for the images to migrate and for ourselves to migrate in order to avoid stereotypes that make us monsters.

These 28th Instants Video have chosen a Virgin with a paradoxical attitude (photographed in a Sardinian church) on their poster: the sword in the heart means that she accepts to suffer for all women, the openness of her heart means that she offers herself to pleasure. We make her say (as we don’t hear any voice from the afterlife) that she does not want to be the object of fantasy anymore. Neither a virtuous virgin-spouse-mother nor a bitch-whore-slut, she wants to be free. The liberation of women from the grip of men, merchandise and religion is the non-negotiable condition for the freedom of all. Despite us, the “dumb” want our happiness.

The positions of the Instants Vidéo Festival are, as we wish, questionable in every sense of the term. Thinking is fighting on the ground of intimate and social contradictions and that is where we stick to the mission of providing a cultural service to the public that is considered as a pool of sensitive and active minds. Where should we start from? On all fronts: open borders for all migrants, sexual freedom, the freedom to love whoever we want, poetic action as a bastion to digital cultures and consumerist hegemony, the beauty of rebel gesture against the ugliness of religious and economist dogma, the division (resistance, my beautiful concern) against the consensual union of the shot/countershot like the “Je suis Charlie” way, tension against harmony, international rights against the delinquency of colonising States, the creolisation of body and language against the purity of races and the debility of national identities, radical hospitality against the politeness of exhibition openings…By being questionable, we give speech a chance. By being disappointing, we give the unexpected a chance.

Imagine a man that implants and cultivates warts on his face. You will then have a true portrait of what culture is when it serves its masters: money and/or the institutions. For the first time, the industrial and financial worlds associate themselves with the States (and their institutions) to impose a limited and unique form of structuring of minds, bodies and physical perceptions: the digital and consumerist culture. There is nothing new in the fact that art is included in the minds of the managers of consciences. What is dreadful is that many artists and organisers of artistic events accept this assimilation without flinching. Since when is an artwork there to praise the benefits of the dominant ideology? That this happens under the effect of the pressure brought by a dictatorial regime can be understood but when it happens with the free consent of those concerned, then it is indecent. What characterises an artwork is that is that it stands against its time. Where there is an atomisation of individuals connected to their consoles or other digital gadgets, the artist must impose a horde of sovereign individualities that unite themselves as a choir. We must create a whole world of our solitudes. For instance: the atomised citizen that is as sensitive as anyone will accept that Europe’s borders remain closed despite the death of thousands of migrants who die each year at our doorstep. He is afraid for his little comfort. At the same time, he will proclaim that digital networks have realised the beautiful utopia of cross-border communications.

You will tell me this is a vision that does not consider the benefits of social networks, the role they have played in the Arab revolutions. Certainly! However, the victorious armed struggle of the Vietnamese people against the US or that of the Resistance movement networks against the Nazi, do not imply that we praise military culture. Likewise, so far, artists using digital art are not condemned for being the sales agents of digital businesses.

That said,
our love and our understanding,
under the gypsy moon,
among the monsters,
where we do perceive the shadows only because we’re still nighthawks.
It will still be so as long as we will resist the update of the software that already serves as artificial intelligence.
Video art is not the call girl of digital culture.
We wish you to be crazily loved.

Marc Mercier
(translation thanks to Elizabeth Grech)