Mock Rock

, 2004
3 minutes
Super8 film transferred to video

An outcropping of rock in the middle of an industrial zone in Queens, New York. A little bit of countryside in the city. Both city and countryside fail to provide any information about the object's nature, serving merely as contrasting terms, linguistic means for differentiation from the urban environment. The filmic gaze discovered the rock, which is shown in detail from various angles. At the same time a woman's voice singing a familiar song a cappella: „I am a rock, I am an island...” elevates the raw Super-8 image.  Rock, scene and song enter into a lyrical liaison, which ascribes a certain feminine eccentricity to the comic aspect of the constructed situation. While the film conveys surprise at this nondescript piece of nature in the first verse, the second shows a woman's body as it encounters the stone. The body disappears as suddenly as it appeared. The song's lyrics blend into the mood of the place like an ethereal layer of meaning, gradually developing a symbol for a "desire for solitude and independence and their impossibility," while at the same time the "social experience of loneliness is mirrored in the cultural conditionality of nature." (Müller) Text: Marc Ries