"WANTED: Actors who can cry on cue for a video art piece. Your performance will consist of a 10-minute audition during which you will try to make yourself cry. The audition will be presented live in front of an audience during this year's Scotiabank Nuit Blanche. Send headshot to..." This ad will be placed in various Toronto newspapers in the weeks leading up to Nuit Blanche. I Cried For You presents a kind of silent duet where the actor concentrates on getting tears and the director concentrates on getting the shot. Tears function as a kind of currency, the money of emotion. For actors, tears are a test, a badge of honor, acting degree zero. You are watching a performance, and yet the tears are "real" - no onions, no glycerin eyedrops. Some actors cry, others don't. Both success and failure are of interest. The focus is not in the fact of crying, but in the process of an actor trying to make him/herself cry. The narrative of crying is stripped, it is left up to the imagination of the viewer to infer. Alongside the audition, close-up and wide shots are projected next to each other-as you watch, your attention drifts between the two. The close-up draws you into a fiction, but then the wide shot pulls you out-you're back in the documentary. This is, after all, just an audition.
Julia Loktev is Brooklyn-based filmmaker and video artist. Her documentary MOMENT OF IMPACT won the Directing Award at Sundance and the Grand Prize at Cinéma du Réel in Paris. Her first fiction feature DAY NIGHT DAY NIGHT won the Youth Prize in Cannes Directors Fortnight and Someone to Watch at the Independent Spirit Awards. Loktev's installations have shown at the Tate Modern, P.S.1, Mito Art Tower in Japan. She received a 2009 Guggenheim Fellowship, and is currently working on her new film The Loneliest Planet.
Julia Loktev, I Cried For You, 2010
Video Installation, Performance
I Cried For You, 2010
Video Installation / Performance
[ selected photographs ]
[ video ]
C6 - Commerce Court - West Building
25 King Street West, viewable from Bay Street
south of King Street West
Viewing area is outside the building