Deviating Dialogue

"Calling to the Stage . . ."

Stephanie Sant


Participated in second edition 
of 'Divergent Thinkers' at St James Cavalier in 2013

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What inclined you to sign up and participate in the Divergent Thinkers exhibition this year?

I was doing my final examinations and came across the call for proposals and found it a perfect beginning into my precarious university-free future. I took the application as an opportunity to take on video further from my natural style, photography and display it.
Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

One of your three videos in your presentation had shown two people playing around with a decapitated swordfish.

The swordfish is more of an anatomy lesson; it's two people freely exploring the anatomy of the creature.
Copyright © Diandra A. 2013  

You were recording how the two people were reacting with the fish head, playing around with its gauged-out eyes.

It was mostly genuine fascination with the anatomy of the fish that I was also involved with as I was filming the eyes closely.

I wanted to construct a space in which I could get as many interesting angles as possible so that I could extract still images from them. That was initially my proposal and how I started out, as from my personal experience subjects tend to be more 'restricted' into posing when it comes to photography and they would act more freely when it comes to film as they wouldn't be waiting for the shutter to click.Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

So the divergence would be where the film takes me and I'd have an endless list of choices for frozen moments that could be then used as still images. Then I wanted to see what kind of videos I'd make. I wanted to use people and I wanted the element of performance art to be present as I am very much interested in exploring it.  So as for videos one and three I 'constructed' a space (with mirrors and other props) for the subjects to engage within and I would take the stance of a voyeur in that case.Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

You're a photographer taking on moving images, demonstrating to still create messages in a way through a second medium, while maintaining your point of view as a photographer.

This exhibition is like a transition from photography to film. I see much more power and potential of a more immersive atmosphere in the moving image. Even during the opening night people's eyes were glued to the screen whether they wanted to or not. We grew up in the presence of TV and cinema where we'd give our attention to the moving images on the screen so such an act is practically instinctive. Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

In this degree even the second video, where the two people were putting random objects on each other near a beach, was a form of transition to film where they would have just posed with the stuff on top of them in any intructed angle. Can it be said then that you were in the stance of a photographer with the instrument of a film-maker? I had been drawn to the screen, but because there was no story or character it made me feel like I was looking at the behind the scenes of a photographic session.

Indeed, the videos lack a story or main is a documentation of a happening between 2-3 people, within a period of time, and the potential that can come out of it when there is an explorative attitude. The second video shows a person constructing using the available resources on top of another person...the act of constructing is a very human quality and could be linked to more primitive times- people building things to make them look prettier, make them feel more sheltered, make them feel busy. not to mention the attitude of 'doing for the sake of doing'.

Do the essays or writings stuck on the wall next to the screens echo the videos in some way?

The writings on the wall are pre-production sketches and write-ups of what happened.

Then is it correct for me to say that you were not only displaying human reactions in your volunteers in the situations being placed to them, but also bringing them out aswell in those viewing them?

Indeed, this is why my videos could be seen as documentative. Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

Your divergence can be seen in taking your background as a photographer and draw what you normally see and experience into the medium of film.

It could also be seen in the fact that my videos are unscripted so divergence is very much present there.
Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

As a photographer solely, what can you say is your most used and recognised theme when taking photos?

I would say . . . chance.

Chance . . . can you elaborate further on that? One example I can think of in link to the theme would be your peacock photo, how in that one shot you managed to get the bird in a precise distinct angle half-hidden behind the tree, without taking the platitude action of presenting a typical full view going 'this is what it is'.Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

Well one could take the title of my exhibition piece which was 'flee tin gly'- life is fleeting (sounds familiar?) and every photograph is one of the many fleeting moments in our lives.

What about the photos with you near nature? Be it near the sea or in your garden.

Two of my favourite places to be in which, as clichĂ© as this might sound, fill me up with health and rejuvenation; the images of me present within them defines my relation to them. Copyright © Diandra A. 2013

Copyright © Diandra A. 2013