October 2 – Homay King

Associate Professor, Director of Program in Film Studies and Center for Visual Culture,
Bryn Mawr College,

“Beyond Repetition: Victor Burgin’s Loops”

This talk addresses recent looped video installation pieces by the artist and writer Victor Burgin. Burgin’s video loops engage in a form of repetition that eschews the logic of the death drive, the repetition compulsion, and eternal recurrence: they are more accurately described as reprises, refrains, or re-readings. Burgin’s recent video works engage with diverse, asynchronous combinations of texts, histories, and visual materials, inviting viewers to connect these materials through a spiral of repeat viewings. In this talk, King will look closely at Burgin’s A Place to Read (2011), a video work that combines a digital reconstruction of the Taslik Khave, a destroyed 1940s-era coffee house in Istanbul designed by Sedad Hakki Eldem, with texts that embed pieces of the history of this site within fragments of a fictional narrative, arguing that, in the words of Gilles Deleuze, Burgin supplies “a story [histoire] that no longer has a place…for places that no longer have a history [histoire].”