Congo 1880 (still), DVD video, 6 mins, 2006

Gemma Pardo

Congo 1880 (still), DVD video, 6 mins, 2006

2007 / Artists

Gemma Pardo

b. 1976 Galicia, Spain

2006-07 MA Fine Art, Byam Shaw School of Art, University of the Arts London
2002-05 BA [hons] Fine Art, London College of Communication, University of the Arts London


Previous Exhibitions and Projects:
2007 Video Cuts, CCA, Glasgow
2007 Arteria Joven [Zaragoza/Spain] with Nosotras art group
2006 Recorded Terrific Electric Performance, Playground Studios
2006 Projections for Rhymes, Reasons & Bomb Ass Beatz, by Harold Finley, Truly Fierce Productions, Oval Theatre
2006 Projections for Her in the Red Dress, Play by Overdramatic Theatre Production Company
2005 Lo Siento [director], Short Ends Film Festival, Benalmadena International Film Festival and Portobello Film Festival

Selectors' Comments:
'CONGO!' became a New Contemps jury-rallying cry after we squinted through Gemma Pardo's wilfully confounding seascape. Visual metaphor? Optical rebus? Pardo's Congo 1880 has no punch line or crucial climax: it just persists and shifts almost imperceptibly. Given the history - and related histories - the continual oscillation between quasi-clarity and blur, absence and anticipation of resolution seems an exceedingly effective metaphor.

A real trick, decidedly plausible until the birds are very big and the deceptive expanse, of the same title, comes down to being a rather local, real creek. A sweet, possible film piece, not too heavy in the extended fantasy of elsewhere.

Artist's Statement:
Gemma Pardo is a film maker and video artist from Galicia, Spain. The video Congo 1880 portrays the tide rising in a harsh landscape against an indistinct horizon. Water slowly engulfs the land. The camera then unexpectedly shows industrial buildings in the distance, beyond the water.