Beware the Table

July 12, 2010

“Beware the Table” is the film for part of my final show in Foundation. As you can probably guess, this is another offshoot of my art school table obsession.

 I’d been brainstorming ideas about other ways to develop my table project so that I could create a final piece that really exhibited all that I’d learned throughout the year and bring to the fore a final piece that showed this and was a step up from my previous work. I had a storyline that had been floating about my head for a long time but I’d never felt confident to tackle, so decided that this was the best opportunity to do it and really bring the year and project to a conclusion (I say conclusion, but I still find my table inspiring so may use it again in the future!).

 I wanted the table to come to life, similar to how I’d made little creatures grow and crawl out of it in my first stop motion animations, but to really develop it into a longer piece. My storyboard is rather sinister, but joyfully so if that is possible.

 I spent a lot of time designing different stage sets for the action to happen on the table, but none of them really worked, so I took a bit of time out from this and did some reading into psychoanalysis and artists’ connections to objects. Artists are thought to often project part of their psyche onto objects that they become fascinated with, something that I could understand; I’d developed a knowledge of, and an affection for this object and really wanted it to live, in a similar way to how children make dolls and objects come alive during play. It’s an uncanny experience and I wanted to reflect this in the final piece (I found Freud’s essay on the “Uncanny” particularly interesting as part of this research). The only way that I could really envisage making this transformation would be to use film and animation and accompany it with some sort of music/sound effects to create the eerie mood.

 The film in brief (I’d like to keep a little bit of mystery for future showings) is dream-like and sinister. It is about a literal take over of creativity, the table comes to life, its heart beats and the paint blobs move about. They change from normal paint to neon under UV light to reveal a life within the life and get sucked in to the heart. A girl working on the table also feels the effect of the creative infection…



I took rather an unconventional approach to the sound of the film, in that I decided on the sound after I had made the film. Yet it only took a few tiny tweaks to be able to match the musical beats to the visuals without changing the storyline or much of the original edit. I simply knew that I would be able to find the right music for the piece as I have a lot of electronic instrumental music. I found a tune by Lackluster called “Haloaw (xx/07/09)” from the album Showcase. It had just the right sinister quality about it and progression in the music to match the progression in each section of the film. I then mixed some of my own sound effects in to give the blobs a voice (of sorts).

A special thank you should be given to my long suffering model/actress, Anna Jordan, who happily let me apply paint in the style of the table all over her body for the film!


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