Let Me ASMR You | 2014 | Found Footage | 02:40
Rhythm study using ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) inducing sounds.
“Under the acronym ASMR hides a difficult to describe phenomenon which involves perceiving a relaxing and delicate tickle on the back, or a tranquilising tingling on the neck, as a physical response to certain sound stimuli. Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response is the full name of this non-scientific concept; a sensorial response which suggests calm, peace and tranquillity. This comforting sensation, also known as cerebral massage, can expand to the dorsal spine and the extremities, amplifying a pleasure which is the consequence of active listening. ASMR has a sensual—or even erotic—component which manifests in the faces and the whispers of people who star in hundreds of videos on specialized channels on the Internet. Active users of YouTube, like GentleWhispering, TheUKASMR or fastASMR obtain millions of views with video-graphic registers narrated by whispering voices which unhurriedly comment on a performatic display of objectual sonorities. This is in fact a parallel dimension located somewhere in between the bizarre and the new age.
The filmmaker Clint Enns regularly goes in for such homemade relaxing productions, since he finds himself sensitive to their acoustic dynamics. As a tribute to this phenomenon he has made a found footage video, about which he says: “obviously I have chosen my favourite scenes, those that I considered best or that were completely strange (nails, the four-blade scissors, etc.).” Reusing short scenes extracted from four anonymous videos, the Canadian director and theorist edits a rhythmic study of found sounds and images, fixed in reiteration. By repeating a few seconds of long fragments, the artist composes a random piece of suggestive noises, a practically musical assemblage, suitable for delight. Let Me ASMR You consists of a series of video-graphic captures which, gathered together, form an acoustic piece of ambient textures accompanied by quotidian objects, whose dynamics refer to creative electroacoustic music processes. In just over two minutes the document summarizes some of the occidental habits unleashed as a result of the democratization of digital cameras and the consolidation of the Internet as a field for the exhibition of homemade and private recordings.
With Let Me ASMR You the artist continues reflecting on the possibilities of appropriation as a material for expression, as he did in Self Improvement (2010), Ten
Skies (2012) or Splice Lines (2012)—all of these audio-visual works are available on Vimeo. In the first piece, he elevates self-help to a hypnotic dimension, taking over computer ad videos and out-of-date environmental graphics, which are then enigmatically transformed into some kind of teaser for a dystopian sci-fi movie. In the two following films he pays tribute to recognized experimental directors: the North American James Benning and the Austrian Kurt Kren. He does so by means of weirdly suggestive reductionist conceptions developed by the elimination of the contemplative skies of Ten Skies (2004), or aroused from showing, exclusively, the joints executed on the celluloid of the film 6/64: Mama Und Papa (Materialaktion Otto Mühl, 1964), one of the works by Kren which documents the celebrated Viennese actions.” – Albert Alcoz, “Cut’n’paste: Let Me ASMR You,” Found Footage Magazine 1 (October 2015): 86-87.
May 2, 2019. Acoustic Geometries, Tuatara Open Late Series, City Gallery Wellington Te Whare Toi, Wellington, New Zealand. Curated by Catherine Fowler.
December 16, 2017. “Let Me ASMR You.” New Experimental Works (N.E.W.), Other Cinema, San Francisco, California.
January 31, 2017. Synesthetic Memory, Winter/Spring Flaherty NYC, Anthology Film Archives, New York City, New York. Programmed by Ruth Somalo.
July 6, 2016. Images Contre Nature, Marseille, France.
June 22, 2016. Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Spectacle Theater, Brooklyn, New York. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Greg Cohen, and Lauren Berliner.
June 11, 2016. “Let Me ASMR You.” Halifax Independent Filmmakers Festival, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
April 29, 2016. Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Block Cinema, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Greg Cohen, and Lauren Berliner.
March 30, 2016. Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Northwest Film Forum, Seattle, Washington. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Lauren Berliner, and Greg Cohen.
March 28, 2016. New Toronto Works, Big Mama’s Cinematheque, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Curated by Amber Christensen and Jesse Cumming.
March 27, 2106. New Toronto Works, Mono No Aware, Centre for Performance Research, Brooklyn, New York. Curated by Amber Christensen and Jesse Cumming.
March 24, 2016. New Toronto Works, Balagan Films, Boston, Massachusetts. Curated by Amber Christensen and Jesse Cumming.
March 19, 2016, “Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Essay Film Festival, University of London, Birbeck, UK. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Greg Cohen, and Lauren Berliner.
March 10, 2016. Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Metro Cinema, Edmonton, Alberta. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Greg Cohen, and Lauren Berliner.
February 21, 2016. Festival of (In)appropriation #8, Los Angeles Filmforum, Los Angeles, California. Curated by Jaimie Baron, Greg Cohen, and Lauren Berliner.
December 5, 2015. CÓDEC Festival de Vídeo Y Creaciones Sonoras, Mexico City, Mexico
November 18, 2015. L’Alternativa, Festival de Cinema Independent de Barcelona, L’Alternativa Hall Exchanges, Barcelona, Spain. Presented by Experiments in Cinema.
November 26, 2015. Off Track, The 6th Kuala Lumpur Experimental Film, Video & Music Festival (KLEX), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
September 26, 2015. New Toronto Works, Pleasure Dome, Toronto, Ontario. Curated by Amber Christensen and Jesse Cumming.
September 18, 2105. RHYTHMUS 17, send + receive & Open City Cinema, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
July 23 – August 22, 2015. Broken Colours, Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto, Ontario. Curated by Ben Portis.
August 14 – 17, 2015. Usurp Zone5 Film Festival, London, UK.
April 16, 2015. Experiments in Cinema v10.36, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Organized by Bryan Konefsky.
February 21, 2015. Sex, Drugs and Tacos, Florida Experimental Film/Video Festival, Gainesville, Florida.
September 27, 2014. Filmideo, Index Art Centre, Index Art Centre, Newark, New Jersey. Curated by Amanda Thackray and Karl Erickson.
June 14, 2014. VIDEODROME, The Great Hall, Toronto, Ontario. Organized by Jubal Brown.