Steve Reinke


Steve Reinke (CA)
Steve Reinke (1963, Canada) is a conceptual video artist whose works have been exhibited at museums and festivals worldwide such as the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the International Film Festival Rotterdam and the Tate museum (London). He is currently associate professor of Art Theory & Practice at Northwestern University, Chicago. Steve’s single channel videos are generally built around a series of first-person monologues in a satiric mode, employing found footage, digital animation and self-made footage. He is a queer Nietzschean, using various rhetorical methods to open up a space of thoughtful engagement, however unstable and tenuous. His video work is an extension of literature, focusing on performance and the voice. Where earlier work was often concerned with an interrogation of desire and subjectivity, more recent work, collected under the umbrella of Final Thoughts, concerns the limits of things: discourse, experience, events and thought.
Final Thoughts Series Four (The Natural Look)
  • © Steve Reinke

The Natural Look is a continuation of the video project Final Thoughts, a series initiated some 25 years ago in which the artist reflects ironically on events from his everyday life. He summarizes the subject of the latest episode as follows:

“There is no future in reproduction. I have no concern with any species extending itself through time. You think you have given birth to a baby, when really you have given birth to a bus driver, or tax collector. Instead, I’m interested in the placenta, the real mother of us all, forgotten, discarded. The softest machine, all lipids and blood, that blooms and rots like any vegetal/floral martyr. That umbilical cord did not connect you to your mother. It connected you to that most partial of objects — the placenta — part you, part mom, all martyr and garbage. It is not the afterbirth but the essence of birth itself. The Natural Look is a video dedicated to all things placental. It is constructed out of material all downloaded from the internet, mostly from You Tube. Nature films — both professional and amateur. Seven chapters are introduced by quotes from E. M. Cioran and Clarice Lispector, which provide a larger context for thinking placentally. The genital is superfluous, but pop music remains central.”

video, 36:32 min, colour, sound

Grant: August–September 2014, Impakt (NL)

EMAP/EMARE grants of Steve Reinke

Impakt (EMARE CDN 2014)