Shooting Stars

Single Channel Colour Video with Sound

Curator's Eye

Sutthirat Supaparinya lives and works in Chiang Mai and Lamphun, Thailand. The multi-disciplinary artist employs a documentarian approach to her work. Her artistic practice questions and interprets public-information to reveal its structures. Her recent projects focus on the impact of human activities on other humans and the landscape through political, historical, and literary lenses.

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Shooting Stars, 2010, single channel video, single channel video, 9 mins, documentary/ experiment.

Shooting Stars is a reflection on the nature of media, capable of transforming reality into something different, or even into its own opposite. The media can tell a lie. As was made clear by the massacre in Bangkok in May 2010, those who are in power can control and manipulate images/sound of reality to be what they want to hear, to watch and to read. They can easily close down any other media that does not support their version. In Shooting Stars, moving images of dark street-light scenery along a railway from Chiang Mai to Bangkok could be seen either as shooting stars or a ray of death. It depends how one experiences it.

This footage shot while I was traveling in a train to Bangkok a few weeks after the military crack down in there. While I was traveling, the symbolic of traveling from provinces to Bangkok, late night and moving ray of light are haunted me. It referred me to protesters traveled from small provinces to Bangkok to join the protesting. They were shot when it was dark at late night while they were about to sleep on a street. And the rapid moving street-light scenery linked me to the rays of laser that lead direction of gun barrel and destiny of the deaths.

To distort the frightened images by turning them vertically sweep such emotion away. It could be images of shooting stars at peaceful night. In a similar way, the sound of bullet shells falling after a shooting (without the sound of the shooting itself) can create peaceful and serene emotions instead of the real fear or panic that shooting actually elicits.

Shooting Stars comments on encounters and situations that I rendered into artistic metaphors. Media can easily function as a distortion and present incomplete information about what is actually being seen.