Exactly the same, 2018

Exactly the same, 2018
Moving Image
Maeve Rendle
'Exactly the same' is a single-screen video installation. This piece considers the impossibility of two people, regardless of sex or race, ever feeling exactly the same way as each other about anything. Over the course of eleven minutes we see a female facing the camera, in profile and then with her back to the lens. Isolated on a black backdrop, her nuanced facial expressions and the smallest of movements are heightened. The camera focuses on the gaze of the female who repeatedly says: ‘I feel exactly the same way’. This phrase pokes at the desire that exists between people to feel understood and not alone in their way of thinking. As the work progresses, it becomes clear that the female is lip-syncing to different male voices in the room (off-camera); her eyes track their faces as she tries to mirror the timing and expression of their words. The voices express the phrase in two different ways, in the manner of excitement at realising a view point is shared, and in defiance as though saying: ‘I feel exactly the same way as I did before’. The piece uses repetition and rhythm to exhaust the female figure and the viewer of the piece alike. It suggests the subtle ways in which manipulation of an individual occurs through agreeing or disagreeing with them. The common human factor of course being that the same feeling - to want to feel the same as others - exists in us all.