Jacob Ciocci b. 1976
Am I Evil?? (single-channel-version) (2012)
“In her essay, “Mirror Horror”, Trinie Dalton describes how the 15th century witch-hunts are tied to the history of the mirror. “In early times, since mirrors were rare commodities, only qualified shamans had mirrors. But in 1438, when Guttenberg started a mirror-making business, . . . anyone untrained in magic could use and be tempted by one. This proliferation of mirrors perpetuated myths of witchcraft, since some theorized that mirrors were being used for maleficence by those corruptible , vain and immoral enough to admire their own reflections. ”

The good witch (Harry Potter?) tries to understand his reflection but the mirror shatters as soon as he touches it. The evil witch (Wicked Witch of the West?) tries the same thing but the mirror again shatters. We are watching reflections of faces forever falling apart. The mirror always shatters just before a fixed identity can be sustained. A mirror is magic in much the same way many newer image-making tools are magic: for a brief moment you are put under a spell, you believe in it. But the longer and the closer you look, everything begins to fall apart. That is the real magic.

This is the 3rd piece in Ciocci’s ongoing series “Trapped and Frozen Forever”, an investigation into the relationships between online and off-line images: images trapped (not tangible) on-screen and images frozen (not moving) in the physical world. In this iteration Ciocci has scanned section by section each of the 2 large collages on the wall, using them as the basis for the animated projection.”