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Lisa Tan

Sunsets is comprised of scenes filmed at either three o’clock in the morning during the summer solstice, or at three o’clock in the afternoon during the winter solstice, in Sweden. The video opens with the sound of a scratchy internet call between two people: the artist—who is largely undetectable, save for the sound of her keypad as she types—and a friend of hers who has agreed to translate an interview from 1977 with the Brazilian writer Clarice Lispector, found on YouTube. This recording, both halting and casual, forms the soundtrack.

In the interview, we hear Lispector describe aspects of her working method and philosophize death’s role in her creative process. “If you couldn’t write anymore, would you die?”—asks the interviewer. The author’s response: “I think that when I write I am dead.” The forces of light and mood converse with the enigmatic Lispector as she chain smokes, seemingly fueling transformative states of becoming, and turning translation’s liminality into a material presence.

Aspect ratio 1.78:1 (16:9)
Prod. format Generic HD-video
Duration 00:22:30
Language Portuguese
Color Color
Sound Stereo
Year 2012
In text Lisa Tan Trilogi
Latest screening Feb 2, 2024
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About the artist

Lisa Tan

Born in 1973 in Syracuse, NY, USA, Lisa Tan lives in Stockholm, Sweden where she is an artist and Professor of Fine Art at Konstfack University College of the Arts, Crafts and Design. She works with video, photography, text, installation, and other gestures. Tan is concerned with the ways in which images and language shape political consciousness, the formation of individual subjectivity, and desire. Aspects of her everyday life — such as love, experiences of otherness, loss — have all served as inspiration alongside her research into different fields of study such as theory of photography, literature, and affect.