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Dragooned, Sandy Amerio, 2012

Vtape presents
SANDY AMERIO (Paris)
Dragooned

November 24 – December 8, 2017

OPENING RECEPTION
Friday November 24, 2017
DOORS OPEN 6:00pm
SCREENING 6:30pm
Followed by Sandy Amerio in conversation with
author and Globe & Mail columnist Russell Smith

Bachir/Yerex Presentation Space
4th floor @401 Richmond St. W.
Open Monday – Friday, 11am-5pm
(Closed Monday November 27, 2017)

Dragooned is a work of military re-enactment. Conceived while Sandy Amerio was in residence at the Nantes Fine Arts School exploring the complex relationship between reality and fiction in contemporary art and cinema. Here she quickly realized that she would have to actually produce a re-enactment of her own in order to have sufficient control in the documentation. And most importantly, she wanted the work to never be outside of what she has called “the logic of re-enactment”, always remaining immersed in the action along with the re-enactors themselves. Dragooned opens with a newsreel-like prologue that takes the viewer back in time to southern France on August 15, 1944, with a company of US soldiers from the 509th Infantry Battalion, part of the 1st Airborne Taskforce about to begin the Allied invasion of France.

In the long involved process of producing her re-enactment, Amerio located a group of career soldiers, one of whom became her principal subject. Constructing the voice-over (and voice “through”) from transcripts of these interviews, Amerio produces a work of deep complexity with no easy answers to questions of violence and its roots in human behaviour.

She clarifies the use of the voice, saying, “There are certain points of contact in the film, where the voice shifts from one register to another, as if changing gears. That's what keeps the spectator alert, listening, going along with the soldiers. The point of view becomes the "point of voice" and the emotional focus thus also changes. It's like in re-enactment, where one can switch sides, can become different characters, from different times, with different nationalities and points of view. I think that the structure of discourse allows me to show the complexity of things, and that somewhere between the reality we create, the reality we are confronted with, and fiction invented through editing, lays the real, violent, unfathomable and eminently existential. I think that Dragooned makes us experience all that.” Anchored in a first person narrative, Dragooned is an intense interrogation of truth by fiction, of reality by lies and both, at times, vice versa.

Curated by Lisa Steele, Artistic Director, Vtape


Sandy Amerio is a visual artist and film director. She was born in 1973 and currently lives and works in Paris. She studied film directing at The National Studio for Contemporary Arts - Le Fresnoy. Her works have been screened in many festivals and cinemas including: the Taiwan International Documentary Festival; BERLINALE 63rd Berlin Film Festival (Forum Expanded);, Hamburg Documentary Filmweek; Cinematheque Quebecoise, Montreal; Projekt Fabrika, Moscow; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; and Art 2102 Gallery, Los Angeles.


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401 Richmond St., suite 452
Toronto, ON  M5V 3A8
416 351-1317
Monday – Friday 11am – 5pm

Sandy Amerio’s travel was generously supported by the Consulat général de France à Toronto

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Vtape acknowledges the generous support of all of our funders including The Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council.

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