Saturday, September 3, 2011

Yolande Moreau: When the Sea Rises

I recently bought a small book about Cindy Sherman; performance artist/photographer, who transforms herself for the camera to expose the persona's women especially take on as part of our society at large. Her photos of herself are shocking, grotesque, vulnerable & tragic & take an enormous amount of gutsy risk, in my opinion.

Another woman who reminds me of Sherman in many ways is Yolande Moreau: a Belgian actress I've written about before as portraying Seraphina, a little know artist. I just watched her directorial debut made in 2006, called, When The Sea Rises. It's a tragic/comedy love story between Irene, a comedienne in her 40's, who is traveling through France with her one-woman show, 'Sale Affaire', (Dirty Business). She encounters Dries, a younger vagabond, who becomes smitten with her & her show. Although regular cell phone calls remind us she has a husband & child waiting at home, Irene becomes charmed by her ardent & tender admirer who is also a street performer as a 'Giant' in parades.


Here we see a woman who entertains the audience as a grotesque behind her mask, while she remains planted firmly in both worlds of performer & wife, (who picks out tiles for a home renovation with her husband). It's when she enters this relationship with a fellow performer that the lines between persona's become blurred. Very well done.

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