Brian Murphy: The Ability to Name Things Has Escaped Me

In Brian Murphy’s Gallery called, The Ability to Name Things Has Escaped Me he primarily edited videos one frame at a time. Once he edited each frame he would change the order or manipulate the amount of time the frame is seen on screen. The gallery was in Bret Llewellyn Gallery on Thursday, October 27th at 6pm. 

The gallery of Brian Murphy’s was presented by himself. There were multiple showings around the room of his work. There were three screens showing his work on turkish oil wrestling. There was one screen showing his piece on a regional wrestling show. Then the biggest screen showed his piece of him editing a segment from the film, Holy Ghost West Virginia. On the smallest screen was a video self portrait. In his gallery there was also a flip book with headphones that contained audio for the book. Each showing was him using his frame by frame technique. When working with each frame it can take a 6 second clip to 12 minutes and he did just that with the Holy Ghost West Virginia piece.

One piece that really stuck out to me was the video self portrait. When presenting Brian spoke about how he incorporated his DNA into the visual and audio. The DNA helped to pull the image apart. The signal in the little tv was messed with the voltage. The control medium for the piece was an electromagnet. When Brian was manipulating this piece the first time he did it live. Another thing that stuck out to me was why he edited like he does. He edits each frame individually and has them last longer on screen so people focused more on each movement. Editing the way he does allows the viewers to look further into the piece. I found this extremely interesting and it does truly work. When looking at all of the pieces you’re trying to understand why they stutter and why they move the way they do. It enables each viewer to scan each frame and see it as an entirety rather than just a quick glimpse in a film. The frame by frame viewing opens up a whole different world when viewing because each frame tells its own story.

Brian Murphy’s gallery shows that pieces don’t have to whole and coherent for them to be beautiful and to make people feel things. The way he approaches each piece allows each viewer to read it and interpret each frame as its own piece. Overall his gallery was very eye-opening and I can use his process once we get into video. I can also use his technique now and put his thought into each frame into my one image pieces. Another way I can apply his content to this course is how he used his DNA to manipulate his video self portrait. I can find other new and unconventional ways to manipulate my artwork.

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