Tate Britain

Susan Hiller is good at catch a moment from the ordinary object; she was expressed the idea by media and ranging of material. The subjective and collective possibilities of memory, language and imagination are examined on the art work in the exhibition. I think the most important element in her work is she tried to catch something that invisible, the super power, the voice of human, and the wave of sound. Which was very impressive but on the other hand, it is difficult to understand.

A short film “An Entertainment” made in 1990, she recording some images to emphasis the horror and violence of popular children’s entertainment. She also highlights the dark color screen and the red moving child with the ugly clown face, combine with loud soundtrack from the laughing children. I felt very uncomfortable; there no violence images but my brain just come through a nightmare. I walk into the room and immediately went out, in some respect this work get a positive respond from the viewers, there no one enjoy it because of the invisible violence in this film. I believe Susan shows her talent by using the media resources, the similar work is “PSI Girls”, she catching the moment from different films with four different girls when they using their telekinetic powers. The film has four diverse colors and combine with the soundtrack of gospel choir which create an extraordinary sensations experienced to the viewer.

I describe her exhibition as a trip because she makes me see things in many different ways. A beautiful moment for children transfer to a horrible experienced, I enjoy the change she brings to me but in the same time I afraid to see this change. Just like her art works, create the strange conflict in a short period of movie or even no image, only a voice from the speaker, record many people’s voices with different languages. This work called “The Last Silent Movie” although there no image at all. Again Susan tried to express an invisible thing, the language, and the voice of human. Outside the room hanging many pictures of waves, the accompanying etchings are base on oscilloscope traces which provide the language does exist. I cannot touch the language, I cannot feel the language but it does exist. I like this work, it bring out a interesting point from everyday life. The last work I want to mention is “witness” and this also the last work in the exhibition. There had 2000 transmits a voice telling a story. They speak different language for different story about the experience of UFOs. When I saw this work I felt I am in a fairy tale world. The visual feast of impression is greater than itself, its look like a huge speaker’s tree in the darkness and the shining blue light all around it.

I always found a conflict in Susan’s work, she expresses the invisible thing in our life by using so many different materials, I enjoy it but in the mean time I hate it. She transfer the thing with different side, as light and dark, they belong each other but different with each other. I believe some viewer would found an echo in her exhibition, but most of them just like studying a philosophy, hate and enjoy it.