Kobalt Works

Alexis Destoop

An “image-maker”, Alexis Destoop has a background in photography & philosophy. His productions examine the experience of time, elements of storytelling and procedures of identification and memory. Informed by the strategies of minimalism, his works, often seductive in appearance, function as lures, that explore the deceptive nature of the images. Destoop regularly works in collaboration with writers, performers and musicians. His earlier work mainly explores notions of duration and performativity, as exemplified by the 3-channel video installation With Usura (2001-2004), whereby three figures manifesting strange & comical discomfort confront the viewer with unsuspected suffering. More recent work investigates processes of fiction and narrative construction through the formal film experiments I’m Happy Men (2005), dealing with the issue of fantasy in the form a fairy tale, and Pandora (2007) which plays with conventions of the thriller genre against the foil of the ancient myth.

Focusing on the subject of landscape, Destoop’s is interested in its artificiality: not a sublime natural object, but a thoroughly human artefact which can appear overwhelming and non-human. Dwelling (2006-2009), a meditation on place triggered through our cinematic memory suggests the bare outlines of a story: an event haunts the desolate setting without ever being revealed. His latest project Kairos (2009-2010) re-signifies Australia’s desert landscape and its history through a science fiction narrative, resonating with colonial history and the omnipresent actuality of the mining industry, and questions the relationship between fiction & reality.