Australian Video Art Archive

Merilyn Fairskye


Eye Contact

00:08:17 2000

Eye Contact is the culmination of a seven-year exploration of the landscape of the face. A thousand people were photographed between November 1992 and January 2000.  They are mostly unknown people from a wide spectrum of racial and social origins who were asked to adopt a neutral expression and to close their eyes before being photographed.  Each image is ‘captioned’ with the person’s first name, occupation and country of birth.  The images move one after the other, in the chronological order in which they were first photographed, from left to right across the screen.  A soundscape that includes over eighty different voices accompanies the images.

This work is both a map and a diary.

Camera: Merilyn Fairskye
Post production: Greg Ferris @ MSV and Merilyn Fairskye
Soundscape: Reach aRound & chit chat von loopin stab @ Audio Sweet

Principal voices: Maggie Gilchrist, Julie Lambert, Ognian Pishev, Sam Schoenbaum.

Production assisted by: MSV Media Services; DVM International; The Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane; Bellagio Study and Conference Center, Rockefeller Foundation, Italy; Computing Services Unit, College of Fine Arts, UNSW.

Thanks to: Ognian Pishev, Chris McKimmie, Beth McRae, Peter Charuk, and the people who contributed their image and voice to Eye Contact.

DVD available