Multiplex was a durational project by Carl Gent that consisted of sculptural works that were activated at specific times during a series of performances and events over the summer. Through the process of making absinthe, the sculptures took on a duality; as both art object and tool for production. A space is created in which the works gesture towards the cultural and geographical associations surrounding the consumption of absinthe, contesting perceived truths and non-truths, opening up towards our theological concerns regarding death and the final judgement of the soul.
It wasn’t that I didn’t want to see The Fast and the Furious as such [I mean I didn’t and I really didn’t want to spend money on it] but it was that we had come to the cinema specifically to see Moulin Rouge with some girl friends and that was why I came. Just cause we were five minutes late, why would we not see it? I wanted to see Moulin Rouge, which I know you had already seen, but still.
And it wasn’t even that it was bad [I mean it was bad] but I had watched bad films in cinemas before and got a kick out of it. Remember we saw Girl With A Pearl Earring in the local one-screen cinema and it was really really boring and had everything about period drama that I detested, but the awful thing about this situation with The Fast and the Furious was that the film I wanted to see was on the other side of one of these sound-cushioned walls. At a delay but yes, in the same building and my mediocre experience was made worse by the, presumably, thrilling world the other side of the wall. A whirlwind of romance, music, absinthe, colour and passion. I was imagining something like the same director’s take on Romeo+Juliet but squared or cubed. Something unimpeachably vibrant. [Something that also would have shown my crush how into the world I was, you know?] Obviously in this case the not-watching and not-knowing made it all the more agonisingly exotic.
Looking back now whirlwind of romance, music, absinthe, colour and passion is probably a fair description of what I remember of The Fast and The Furious, minus the absinthe of course [although I can’t be sure about this and there’s been a lot of sequels and reboots since]. But it wasn’t a world I knew. I was illiterate to the high-octane, high-def, high-energy levels rippling through what seemed to be a long product placement narrative. And why does Vin Diesel burn so much diesel? Is that some kind of weirdass joke or subtext?
This, Screen 3, was certainly the worst of all possible worlds.
So I fucked around. Used my time to actually look at the cinema room. Regard the frame that was my temporary inclusion zone. Like a shift at work or I dunno a funerary service. When I got really bored I pretended to make a move on Gareth which was factually hilarious cause we both liked girls, even if it wasn’t actually funny.
I never did see Moulin Rouge at the cinema but I do still have a VHS copy of it somewhere, one with a lenticular front cover, although I might be getting confused with my copy of Volcano here.
Did you know absinthe isn’t actually hallucinogenic?
Text by Carl Gent