Les endormi(e)s – The Sleeping Ones

Les endormi(e)s – The Sleeping Ones, Video, 9′, 2044

“What could be hiding behind these closed eyes? Vivid or peaceful dreams, images, colours, sounds… Or perhaps silence, a peaceful thoughtlessness, a removal from the world.
These moments of escape from the tumult of everyday life were filmed by Natacha Nisic in the Tokyo underground back in 2004. The Japanese are known for their frantic pace of work, their strict self-control, letting their personalities give way to efficiency and devotion to a company. Here the artist captures a brief moment of abandonment. Lulled by the movement of the wagons, these travellers have lowered their guard and enjoy a moment of solitude.

We can see glasses slipping on the head, a head bending, a lock of hair that is falling in front of a face. But their gaze is hidden from us; their eyes are closed; their faces hide their emotions. Are they still present or have they found a way to abstract themselves from the world around them, to escape the constant pressure of society’s gaze?

They left the soil of the Japanese capital to inhabit their dreams. Another world is opening up to them. Isn’t the impossibility of filming this ‘elsewhere’ that Natacha Nisic is also trying to account for? Does the most important element remain hidden? In this work, the artist is visible in the invisible. Perhaps by slowing down time, by suspending it, she almost succeeds in reaching this faraway place where these passengers have taken refuge.”

Hortense Albisson ©Videocity.bs