Date of Submission
Academic Programs and Concentrations
Film and Electronic Arts; Mind, Brain, and Behavior
Project Advisor 1
This project was born from a fascination by objects that have been physically transformed, installed, abandoned, or manipulated. These tend to evoke a strong emotion in me, as though I am looking at art pieces of a sort. Since I was interested in the visual explorations and spontaneity that often characterize the medium of photography, I knew that my film wouldn’t follow a script. Instead, having a certain framework in mind, I would allow myself to be guided by how things look and feel. Yet, my images wouldn’t be still, but moving. I was curious to discover the outcome of this experimental approach.
I started wandering the streets of Manhattan, in the search for things in a state of impermanence – food carts, dirty surfaces, flower shops, construction sites, store windows, puddles, and garbage. While filming, I had the intention to make the viewer aware (at least in some scenes) that there is someone behind the camera who is recording the city. Therefore, I would often employ an aesthetic that mirrors my subjectivity, for instance by allowing objects to touch the lens or for people to look at it. In a way, then, I became a character – an observer in the search for meaning. On other occasions, I would try to make myself disappear and give the viewer a more objective perspective on things. This shift, between self and no-self, corresponds to a view in the philosophy of mind which I describe in the paper for my MBB concentration: it does not regard the self as a fixed and immaterial entity that is distinct from experience (what we usually take ourselves to be), but rather as an experiential process in itself that is flexible, depending on our mode of awareness. In other words, one’s sense of self can sometimes shift (for instance in meditative states), when the subject’s felt boundaries extend to the world (or even disappear).
What I created is a set of impressions that could be perceived as the interconnected layers of the city’s consciousness, that of its people, and my own. Each fragment is like an ephemeral experience that comes and goes in one’s awareness.
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Meshorer, Camille Tom, "Eye" (2014). Senior Projects Spring 2014. 141.
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