Memorial For Bad Jokes (2016)
4 minute loop

Memorial For Bad Jokes is an exploration of the relationship between the artist's mortality and electricity, a dynamic yet non-organic force, as well as an exploration of strange robotics.

The constructed environment within the video functions as a purgatory and as an absurdist procession performed to the rhythms created by a cast of wearable electronics. “I Thought It Would Be Funny,” is a death shroud made of LED lights, pulsing based on a simple timing circuit. The lights blink in time with a capacitor’s discharge and function as a visualized heartbeat, but one that continues even as the wearer dies and is revived. Time is also kept by “The Little Drummer Boy,” a wearable mechanical drum stick strapped around the artist's waist, and “The Public Speaker,” a shawl covered in speakers that plays a recording of the artist screaming. “The Social Escape Dress,” passes through, emitting a cloud of fog through a wearable system of vaporizers and aquarium pump motors.

These multiple representations of the artist speak to both the multiplicity of identity in the digital era, and to an ongoing interest in the relationship between machines and nonsense, partially inspired by Surrealist and Dada thinkers and their campaign to challenge Humanist notions of reason by creating moments of alienation. Machines, video and editing by Kathleen McDermott. Sound design for this piece was done in collaboration with Senem Pirler.