Event
Image courtesy of videoclub and Videotage.

Both Sides Now 9: Generations

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April
2024
18:30 - 20:30
Book Tickets

Both Sides Now 9: Generations | Subtitled | 49 mins | Rated 18

esea contemporary is pleased to host the screening programme 'Both Sides Now 9: Generations'. Curated by videoclub and Videotage, the programme showcases moving image works by international artists and filmmakers, including Chan Ka Chi陳家智, Doreen Chan陳泳因, Lau Wei劉衛, Jake Elwes, Paul Trillo, Axl Le乐毅 and Jonas Lund.

'Both Sides Now 9' delves into the intricate interplay between generative technology and creativity by engaging with the latest advances in AI - which are revolutionising our way of life. As we stand at the brink of a new era of automation, humanity is poised for a profound transformation.

Jake Elwes, Zizi & Me – Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better), 2020
Paul Trillo, Jacques – ‘Absolve’, 2023
Axl Le 乐毅, The Journey, 2020
Axl Le 乐毅, The Patient, 2021
Axl Le 乐毅, A hundred Varieties of Life, 2021-22
Jonas Lund, The Future of Something, 2023
Chan Ka Chi 陳家智, Reconstructed, 2022
Doreen Chan 陳泳因 HalfDream, 2021
Lau Wai 劉衛, The Dome, 2023
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PROGRAMME

Jake Elwes, Zizi & Me – Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better), 2020, 4:55 mins

Jake Elwes, Making of the Zizi Show, 2021, 6:19 mins

Paul Trillo, Jacques – ‘Absolve’, 2023, 4:43 mins

Axl Le 乐毅, The Journey, 2020, 3:49 mins

Axl Le 乐毅, The Patient, 2021, 1:38 mins

Axl Le 乐毅, A hundred Varieties of Life, 2021-22, 2:40 mins

Jonas Lund, The Future of Something, 2023, 13:41 mins

Kachi Chan 陳家智, Reconstructed, 2022, 3:59 mins

Doreen Chan 陳泳因 HalfDream, 2021, 5:38 mins

Lau Wai 劉衛, The Dome, 2023, 1:50 mins

Film Synopsis

Jake Elwes, Zizi & Me – Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better), 2020, 4:55 mins

Zizi & Me is a double act between drag queen Me The Drag Queen, and a deepfake (A.I.) clone of Me The Drag Queen. By training a neural network on filmed footage this network learnt to construct a virtual body that can be controlled by feeding it new reference movements. The first act 'Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)’ satirises the idea that an AI is something that we might mistake for a human. Through drag performance, we aim to use cabaret and musical theatre to challenge narratives surrounding A.I. and society.

Jake Elwes, Making of the Zizi Show, 2021, 6:19 mins

The Zizi Project is an ongoing collection of works by Jake Elwes exploring the intersection of Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) and drag performance. Drag challenges gender and explores otherness, while A.I. is often mystified as a concept and tool, and is complicit in reproducing social bias. Zizi combines these themes through a deepfake, synthesised drag identity created using machine learning. The project explores what AI can teach us about drag, and what drag can teach us about A.I.

Paul Trillo, Jacques – ‘Absolve’, 2023, 4:43 mins

Fusing traditional VFX with a variety of boundary-pushing AI techniques, Absolve gives way to a new aesthetic and offers an alternative to how visual effects will be approached in the future. A leak in the ceiling of the Louvre pulls Jacques into an emotional vortex where a cosmic teardrop dissolves the museum’s masterpieces into their rawest forms. Follow your tears and see where it might take you.

Axl Le 乐毅, The Journey, 2020, 3:49 mins

A short film consisting of three parts, The Journey is a reflection on the relationship between humanity and nature. The work is inspired by Le's travels to Norway. The film unfolds on a distant planet where a series of experiments are being conducted to restore the nature of the planet. A visual experience is created which speaks to the heart and soul of the natural world and serves as a reminder to protect and cherish the planet.

Axl Le 乐毅, The Patient, 2021, 1:38 mins

The Patient short film reflects on the role of a modern work environment and how it impacts our lives. It was made in opposition to a statement made in 2019 by Alibaba CEO, Jack Ma, who advocated that '996' is a blessing. '996' is an increasingly common practice in the Chinese tech industry, where employees are required to work from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm, 6 days a week.

Axl Le 乐毅, A hundred Varieties of Life, 2021-22, 2:40 mins

The main themes of A hundred Varieties of Life are spring, summer, autumn and winter, combining the seasons with various lifestyles and natural spaces to create different fascinating lifestyles. 

Jonas Lund, The Future of Something, 2023, 13:41 mins

The Future of Something, a sequel to Lund’s The Future of Nothing (2023), which appeared in the prequel exhibition, takes a deep dive into the human anxieties framing an AI-driven world. Across the morphing vignettes of seven AI-generated human support groups—ranging from couples therapy to robot love tensions, online poker addicts to content creators anonymous—the video deftly navigates familiar fears of machinic displacement of the self through the heightened drama of parody.

Kachi Chan 陳家智, Reconstructed, 2022, 3:59 mins

There are strong parallels between memory reconstruction and AI image generation. Both are expressions of reality that are accurate yet inaccurate, in the sense that they are a reality that has been artificially constructed. Both rely heavily on nostalgia, the idea of a romanticised past that may or may not have existed. Reconstructed attempts to reconcile these two realities by using AI, film dialogues, literature and artist’s writings about Wan Chai. The resulting images are at once familiar but alien, reconstructing a mirror of our memories refracted through the lens of machines.

Doreen Chan 陳泳因, HalfDream, 2021, 5:38 mins

HalfDream is an ongoing participatory project since 2021, collecting the dream content of people in different regions and matching common dreams to facilitate dreamers to connect based on dreams instead of societal boundaries. HalfDream has collected over 4200 dreams mainly via showing its’ online platform (HalfDream.org) with site-specific installations, which created semi-public spaces in exhibitions in Pittsburgh, New York, Chicago, Paris, Xiamen, Beijing, and Hong Kong. 

Lau Wai 劉衛, The Dome, 2023, 1:50 mins

The artist's digital avatar, resembling a motion capture performer, emerges in front of a green screen within a dome. They explore various scenes, encountering a man in a protection suit facing blue-bodied creatures. As chaos erupts, the protagonist continues forward. The man reappears, leading them through an iron gate into a new space. Confusion ensues as they realise they're trapped in another sealed dome, witnessing a giant figure in a protection suit passing by outside.

關於彼岸觀自在 About Both Sides Now

Both Sides Now is a tactical programme partnership between Videotage (HK) and videoclub (UK). Which uses contemporary and historical film and video work to explore developments within the culture and society of Hong Kong, China, the UK, and beyond.

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Biographies
Axl Le
Kachi Chan
Doreen Chan
Jake Elwes
Jonas Lund
Lau Wai
Paul Trillo
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