This is project set within the sphere of everyday life, given the issues it addresses, namely the communication processes that family life involves; The Rag Dolls ´Project touches on various characterising and fundamental aspects of modern western societies. The project comprises two works. One of the key elements in the Rag Dolls´Stories is the idea of games as a structural component that is present in all kinds of socio-cultural, political and religious events; It is an essential part of the learning process and thus a factor underpinning human behaviour. Moreover, by showing the everyday affairs of the members of my family in their life together, the project takes up a universal topic: the fear of loneliness. While it is not originated in individualism, this concern can be thought of us the result of certain individualistic modes of behaviour that are prevalent in today?s world. The fear of being left alone of losing those we most love, in short, the fear of death, have their expression here in the replacement of some individuals by their exact replicas made from rags. This arouses a certain loathing of the strange and the unknown and is foreshadowed by a strong presence of disturbing elements which, by means of visual resources, opens the door to gloomy interpretations.

First conceived of as a photography project, Alone analyses and proposes a new interpretation of the ?vision cone? model, which was associated in the 70s with the Lacanian concept of the ?mirror stage?. In this stage of psychological development, according to Lacan´s theory, the subject is reinstated in the space of representation while, at the same time, the subject-object dichotomy is maintained. As Victor Burgin states in Perverse Essay (1991), ?The optical model has encouraged confusion between real space and psychic space, between the psychoanalytic object and the real object?.

In Alone these two concepts related to visual representation are expressed through chiasm. The metaphor of reflection engages the spectator in a series of visual games in which he or she must decipher different levels of representation that coexist in the same photographic medium (that of the dolls and that of the models they imitate). The chiasm, the projection of the other self in the space of the image, clearly focuses on this confusion between reality and fiction, between the subject-object of the cone of vision model. However, the project does not merely address the different facets of image construction, it also shows the links between the modern individual and solitude, and how these are perceived in everyday life. In contrast to Rag Dolls´ Stories, in this case I have endeavoured to portray solitude in a positive light, devoid of the concepts of loss, death and dependency, taking photographs of people from my own family in situations where they are usually by themselves, and using rag effigies that accompany them in their activities. Nevertheless, the notion of playfulness within the family is still latent, as the model where the rules of the game are initially set.

Rag Dolls´ Stories

Artist: Vanessa Pastor
Production year: 2006
Duration: 00:06:15

Valle Orti

Purchase options:
  • No full video is available