First Impressions (The Art of Boats Names) is a 16 mm animated film produced by Emily Waknine, exhibited in loop video format at the Learning Zone. Inspired by the absurdity of boat names guided by the premise that all boats should have a name the film explores by the visceral usage of hand drawn text that flows, melts or dissolves into the singleness of each wave.
The playfulness of each boat name is reduced to words, as boat names are striped away from the boat image, facilitating an imaginary interpretation of the boat and owner. This removal separates yet emphasizes the emotional association of boating as a social, personal and sometimes obsessive activity. The alphabetical cataloguing lays down a structure which contrasts the organic peace and freedom which boating usually represents.
Breaking the formal structure of the piece, one element illustrates the boat name on a complete image of the boat including the owner and his dog.
The rhythm of waves lapping against the hull is heard on the soundtrack, synchronized with the visual patterns of the animation.
First Impressions speaks of the temporal nature of a wave, the motion of the water, and the glimpses we get into the life of the owner when we meet the boat. First impressions are fleeting, and Emily’s work is a tender look at these fleeting glances. Tori Mass
On until October 1st at the Learning Zone.