Joe Sneed & Jordan Mitchel

These five works have their source in YouTube videos posted by RT, a mass media corporation in Russia. The original footage was published within hours of being filmed in Cairo and was viewed by millions of people seeking a lens into the revolution that unfolded in Egypt in January 2011. We have appropriated and edited segments of these source videos and redrawn a media’s presentation of history.

The form of the edited videos is sketched out in their time-lines. We have stretched, mirrored, cut and sewn together pieces of the visual and audio time-lines to make complex loops from the original footage. Each video has been uniquely altered, though they all share a circularity in form. The videos have no beginning or end. They are revolutions in time.

The poignancy of the source videos is in their rawness. They were produced for immediate consumption and offer an objective eye into the making of Egypt’s history. We intend our work to also be impartial and unresolved, but from a viewpoint that is distanced in time and lacking the breaking moment of news. We have placed a frame and a focus on the imagery so that it can be re-consumed slowly, like an album of family portraits.

The subject of the work belongs to a specific time and place. But revolution and its representation in the work will resonate differently with each viewer. How will it differ between a Russian, an American, or a Chinese? Our work aims to emphasize this confusion between personal history and objective fact. The videos present history not as a progression in time, but rather as a knot to be untangled within each witness of time.

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