Status Report, 2009 Single channel video, color, sound

"In Status Report, Bress’s world is grotesque and psychologically charged. A vaudevillestyle comedy with slapstick elements, it develops around the gags of several camp figures — all played by the artist — each in his own environment made of basic pieces of furniture and backdrops with drawings and collages: a boxer punching against his own bedroom wall; an astronaut traveling through outer space in a cardboard box; or a miner speculating about the difference between the words “work” and “hobby.”

These short sketches, edited together in a broken narrative, show these lonely characters repeating actions and jingles in a state of isolation, enclosed in their own worlds. That is, until they evade their original spaces and enter those of other characters, as when the miner enters the boxer’s bedroom through a hole in a huge Rorschach blot drawn on the wall. Bress plays with these passages, shifts and overlapping realities, just as he plays with the notions of subject and background, going back and forth from tri-dimensional to bi-dimensional space: from the space of imagination to the space of representation.

Although animated by puns, comic gags and eccentric colors, Status Report is dark comedy, dealing with alienation, nonsensical narrative and hallucinatory perception. “Because it’s depression,” reads a sign on a white screen leaning against the white wall of, presumably, the artist’s studio — suggesting that this is the space, both mental and physical, of invention and art."

- Sonia Campagnola
Flash Art 269 NOVEMBER - DECEMBER 2009

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