The Smile (2004), video performance (3min 29sec)
Exeter, Great Britain
Through the use of a simple action – smiling (or rather trying to keep a smile on) – The Smile, in a subtle and satirical manner, portrays a world of pretence and false behaviour.
Similarly to I Must Be, The Smile highlights that trying to behave in a manner expected or demanded by society and others can leave one looking and feeling awkward, alone and out of place. Hence, (forced) smiling turns into torture, rather than pleasure.
In addition to this, The Smile also reflects on the process of disintegration, reminding us that all things slowly and organically change and come to an end.
The Smile is part of the Forced Actions series of video performances.