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Cry Pig, the piece from which the show takes it s title, features a group of children enacting a climactic police raid in front of a supermarket. The viewer simultaneously watches three different takes of the scene unfold. Without props or costumes, the children appear to be playing or rough housing, however, through the voiceover narration, the actions take on a more threatening tone as one searches the image for displays of violence.
Quite possibly the most disturbing work of her career — Maria places herself in front of the camera. Frozen in a Kubrick-like interior of wealth and power, the artist stands motionless as the camera pans over her body. As we watch the camera watch, her flesh is disturbed as though our gaze itself was bruising her body, rippling her veins and grabbing her throat. The six-minute loop repeats three passes of the same footage, during each pass, however, the special effects change in intensity, leading the viewer to question their own vision.
In President Bill Clinton, Memphis, November 13, 1993, Marshall presents her two sons, Jacob and Raphael in a sumptuous sun filled-interior. Diffused light streams trough a large window completing an image of material comfort and well being. In this room, in stop-motion, we see the boys endlessly unwrapping gifts. The narration, read haltingly by Marshall s four-year old, is a fragment from a Clinton speech ostensibly about Martin Luther King s legacy. By wrenching the text from the adult professional and placing it in the mouth of a youngster, Marshall gets at the emotive center of Clinton s speech with alarming force. The boys asks, “Who will be there to take care of these children?” as we witness an endless stream of consumption.
Theresa s Story is structurally quite simple. The artist s son told his mother a story, which he claimed to have heard that day from a teacher. Marshall was intrigued by the element of performance in the boy s retelling of this narrative and arranged to film him. As presented, Theresa s Story shows us two views of the boy, facing forward and in profile, telling the same story on different days. His elaborations relate to each other creating an intertext with the density of a puzzle. As both tales are shown side by side, the additions and subtractions from the first telling to the second, make very clear the role of acting in the oral delivery of stories. The artist s investigative process has yielded a glimpse of real life s inherent fiction.
Dont let the T-Rex get the children. begins as a close-up of the licking tongue of Marshall s three year old son. The camera slowly pulls back, investigating the boy s face, eventually revealing the space in which he is located. In an uncanny way, the boy appears to change age, to shift from child to adult, to vacillate between an embryonic state and death itself. The idea of passage represented in this piece was also the genesis for I did like being born, I put my wings open, then I flied., in which the boy floats in water, sometimes slipping underneath the surface. His mother, as editor, repeatedly forces him back under, not only denying him breath but arresting the ravages of time.


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