My video, which is based on the re-enactment of the act of prayer, is performed by an unknown woman who believes in the Islamic faith. The video is shot in a realistic and subjective documentary style. The camera focuses on the kneeling body of a woman in a traditional dress, whose face and head is covered with a white veil, which both reveals and hides her identity as a Muslim. The camera captures and manipulates the poetics of the gestures of her body while she is praying transforming it into an abstract decayed creature. Once in a while written text from ? The War Prayer ? appears and dissolves over of her praying and decayed body .
The imagery in ?The War Prayer? brings to mind a line from Dostoevsky's novel, "Notes in the Underground? that being "I am God's lonely man?. However, the irony is that the women?s prayer in the video is diffused and violated by the invasion of a domestic housefly, which hovers all over her body and as well as by the effects of the camera and technology. Anchoring the visual content with the loud annoying sound of the fly justoposed with the original text from Twain?s ?The War Prayer? shows the human being in the familiarity of the act of her faith, while at the same time reduces the human being into the very basic and primal condition of her existence: a victim of poverty, violence, decay and death. The video invites the viewers to ask themselves where exactly does true evil lie and what or whom is exactly threatening our existence today.
My intention with "The War Prayer" is to convey a feeling of alienation and loneliness as consequence to being unique or different in a world of indifference, lack of communication and fear for the other, to which we do not understand.

The War Prayer

Artist: Jenny Marketou
Production year: 2008
Duration: 00:04:02

Anita Beckers

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