Passages (mad love, poetry, revolution)”

A special edition that whispers: “Passage, my beautiful worry”.
Festival October/November 2021 – Deadline June 4

In 2021, for the 34th consecutive year, with the complicity of video artists and friends, I will try to find poetic solutions in that same place where ideologies lead us towards dead ends. 

This special edition will be a festival of passage. Passing the baton, passing experiences. Dialectic of anachronism and of the becoming contemporary, of memory and visions of the future. Over these past three decades, I have interwoven the threads of a collective commitment of artistic, friendly and technical complicity and also that of my personal commitment that goes to the extent of challenging my own certainties, knowledge and knowhow. 

This year, I would love to bring together, more than ever, the three horizons that have always served as benchmarks to navigate among the artworks, thought and turmoil of social and political news that each year have constituted the raw material of the festival: Mad love (desiring, burning, experimenting), poetry (doing, exposing oneself, risking), revolution (imagining, transforming, emancipating oneself, no long being afraid).

If the terms of this triad have never changed, if poetry has always been placed at the heart of the project, over time, the radical change was of having reversed the places of the first and the last terms. Mad love (desire) has become the prow of the Instants Vidéo Ship. 
This is how Rimbaud’s “change life” has become the condition of Marx’s “change the world”. In the two cases, it is all about poetically inhabiting our desires and the world.

Unlike in other years, this special edition of the Instants Vidéo will not be preceded by a call for participation allowing artists to submit an artwork that will be subsequently selected or not.
The procedure is a little more unusual: if you wish to submit an artwork, a poem, a story, a performance, a conference or a whimsical idea, you will have to tell me how your contribution fits into this special edition whose provisional title is “Passages (mad love, poetry, revolution)”: marcmercier@instantsvideo.com

Here’s an example. I myself have given myself this constraint. With a camera and a pen in hand, I decided to take the path that the German philosopher Walter Benjamin had to travel clandestinely in 1940 to cross the Pyrenees with the help of Lisa and Hans Fittko. He carried his last manuscripts with him, the ones he cared about more than his own life. They disappeared. I will take with me Walter Benjamin’s “The Arcades Project” and “Le livre de l’image” (The Book of the Image) of an anonymous kabbalist 13th century to slow my pace. A rite of passage to keep going without being defeated. In search of lost words. Story of an experience. Fatigue. Bliss. Imagining the horizon ahead at the risk of magnificent panic. Or death, as far as Benjamin is concerned.

“Every epoch not only dreams the next but by dreaming impels it towards wakefulness”, Walter Benjamin tells us. We must find passages…

Marc Mercier (translation: Elisabeth Grech / Mana Chuma Tearto)

Images : Angelus Novus / Paul Klee &  Coup d’oeil rétrospectif. – Comme quoy Messer Satanas sortant du Sabbat cerchoyt de l’oeil une âme qu’il croyait avoir oubliée / Gieffe