Iran - Shay Mazloom gallery image
Shay Mazloom: Blank Surface, 2010. Video, 2:44 min, image courtesy the artist and OtherIS.

Blank Surface is a work about the effects of social discourse on individuals, and incorporates language as a critical element of knowledge and power affecting identity. Words from texts describing the female body scroll across the surface and around the silhouette of the artist's own body like a snake or a laser-like scanning device searching for a vulnerable crevice or opening. In live performance, the viewer is a silent witness to the scene. Just as the artist is passive, and the words active, searching and defining, so the audience, too, is confined to the role of observers.