An artist called Chloë became famous for her “silly” photographic portrait of an alleged Terrorist. It was made up of thousands of tiny pictures of the following – victims, news reporters, soldiers, drinks vending machines, torturers… She drank the beverage in question at the time but did not deem this too problematic. She refused to watch a certain news network, but one of her favourite movies – with the “click-click” shoes – would not have been possible without the cooperation of RupertVixen Films International, who have come under fire from the usual critics. One of this years most successful film documentaries, which focussed at least in part on RupertVixen, did in fact receive financial assistance from one of its many subsidiaries.
Chloë did not understand her so called “Agent”, which is unfortunate because her “Agent” was the one who talked for her – on the videoconferencing and the Bluberry and the email and probably even some things that are yet to be invented. She did not look like her “Agent”, but her agent was everywhere.
Agents are like spies. If you do a thing, even if it’s a “silly” thing, you get an “Agent”. Everybody wants one, like first prize at the fair. Chloë probably had more than one, an unseen “Agent”. One who watched that certain news network with reckless abandon, and didn’t care. Her “Agent” had a diary stored on 256kb of her Bluberry. Her Agent’s “Agent” meanwhile had 5GB of storage or more, enough to store a larger diary, and thousands of very bland songs.
Chloë saw the postcards in the lobby. “Freedom” was only one piece in her extensive body of work. She had since improved, but “Freedom” was the one everyone bought postcards of. She looked at all of the postcards in terror. She explained to her “Agent”:
“Listen, there doesn’t need to be another…” she waved at the postcards distractedly and gulped as if she was eating something rancid. “…thing like this. Play down “Freedom”, play it down. I was young and it’s silly, well – not so young – but I didn’t know what I was doing”.
The work was called “Freedom” and the exhibition thing was called “Reflections on “Freedom”. They were expecting her to give Reflections. But the work was not a mirror, she explained to her “Agent”, and she was neither ready nor willing to explain anything. Lately she couldn’t even stand to have a mirror in her own bathroom. She could not give them “Freedom”, in the Open-Dialogue they wanted. She felt like emptying a refuse bag on the gallery floor, puking onto patrons’ suits and pinning banana skins to the walls. She didn’t know what to do.
“The issues of the day”
“people need to see visions like yours reflected…”
“The issues of the day are not like soups”, she thought. She tried to clutch herself to the bosom of a room with unforgiving corners. Agent was one of them, like all these people who had no warmth. Perhaps soup was what they wanted, not Issues. Issues are not known for their soul-soothing properties.
“Chloë, everyone’s confused. If you’re confused, then, sure I am too, why not. I don’t have a fucking clue, what’s a Terrorist? What is “Freedom”? People like it, Chloë; they’re buying the postcards in the lobby. Who wants to send a Terrorist home in the mail? No-one. But now it’s “Freedom”!
Everybody likes you as an innocent. You don’t drink, you don’t do drugs…”
“I use naughty words. I didn’t mean to.”
“Frankly I dunno what the hell you must have done to get here. But you’re not at Art School any more, and these people don’t think this work is “silly”. You know I respect you, Chloë, but you’ve got a lot of growing up to do.”
A journalist for RupertVixen Publications attended Reflections on “Freedom”. Just last month, he attended a premiere where a European filmmaker gave credibility to certain things he had assumed, in the privacy of his own mind, to be absolutely immoral.
When Chloë was a child, every evening on TV, a teddy bear would take a shower, brush its teeth, snuggle up in bed and go to sleep.
If you weren’t sure it was night-time, it was then.