White Noise


Video-installation by MOTUS

shooting Daniela Nicolò

audiovisual direction and montage Enrico Casagrande

sound Massimo Carozzi

production Motus in collaboration with “Link perform Xing” of Bologna.

Duration 30′

Year 2000

Start out from white and return to the brilliant white of false silence, of smog, of raised dust, low cloud, vaporised water…Images triggered by sound, by that white noise found in car interiors or motel rooms: continual hum, insistent… noise of enclosed, filtered spaces, noise of air-conditioning systems which imperceptibly alter visual and auditory perception.

Sound landscapes then, mounted on the rhythms of the various types of noise produced thereby: landscapes stolen from the speeding car, filtered by the dirty windows or captured by a small digital camera hidden amid the chaos of a market or casino… racket and silence … city and desert… traffic jams and the apparent quiet of a hotel room.

We were in Los Angeles in August, wandering among dilapidated motels and hotels downtown, collecting images and sounds, as always, gathering digital shots of contrasting scenarios, city and blinding deserts, in the suffocating August heat swallowed up by the smog and by the traffic as slow as a drugged pachyderm.

We went there without really knowing why, seeking as always, and as always finding… often finding similarities and embarrassing cases of déjà-vu with regard to the low linear towns of Romagna, the Riviera hotels, the souvenirs of San Marino which seemed multiplied to the infinite in the mirrors of the Mexican shops… how strange that you distance yourself to get out, whereas you actually go deeper into what you already know!

And when you go and shut yourself in your hotel room you could be anywhere and you’re nowhere, you’re just there, like in the theatre…

Streets and loss of direction, dispersions, cancelling out, you take the pictures and feel small, nothing, you flow and it appears that everything is still flowing with you. And moving continually through American landscapes you experience a feeling of disturbing familiarity, perhaps the cinema, perhaps the TV, but not only. It is a recurrent bewilderment because everything is different, but everything is so obsessively repeated with tiny, infinitesimal variations that it shortly becomes customary, always resembling something already seen, of common knowledge.

Like the variations in motorway restaurants.

And in its excesses the exaggerated vegetation of California too becomes artificial, unreal, plastic… perhaps the continual irrigation, perhaps the much thought-out matchings with various types of dwelling.

We worked on this obsession in WHITE NOISE, seeking the Sound Rhythm of the video montage: there is no external soundtrack. Each sequence fragment retains its original sound. The car radio was often playing, but mostly the sound consists of only the infinite variations of traffic noises or the wind picked up by the camera microphone, all of which, with the montage cuts, has taken on such distortions as to approach a musical score.

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