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digital video, 1920 x 1080 HD, no audio
am i a joke to you is a video performance by Kristen Rästas. The video depicts the artist slowly and delicately putting on clown makeup. This will escalate to the point of putting on a wig, after which, the image gets faster and crooked. The artist is making exaggerated clown expressions which are amplified by the video editing, creating a distorted mirror effect.
The self-ironic video is a reflection on the cultural world, where artists often don’t have social security but are expected to work for free. The feeling of juggling between double lives of what is too personal and what is professional, unavailability of a seriously functioning salary system, being constantly misunderstood within the work field and the never ending blinding race to success create conditions where one can easily lose touch with their true self. The act of putting on a disguise questions whether to break free from these artificially created standards of keeping up an appearance or to submit to them in an oversaturated way.
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