By Harry Dodge
Fred Can Never Be Called Bald is a sustained, essayistic meditation on the transformation of matter: into new states or new meanings, and, via digitization, into the virtual world. The title derives from a famous logical fallacy (called a continuum fallacy) in which bivalent thinking (i.e. “bald” or “not bald”) forecloses the apprehension of a change. In other words, in a continuum fallacy, a change is said to be impossible simply because its exact moment of arrival cannot be discerned. Via a distorted collage of YouTube clips, many of which depict explosions and other extreme physical incidents, the video attempts to slow down or otherwise make manifest transformation—to attempt, even if in vain, a better apprehension of the transitive. Its use of YouTube is driven by Dodge’s fascination with those YouTube participants who appear both enthralled with the digital or virtual world, and also enchanted by—even desperately engaged with—their own physical bodies and forces of nature. Made while Dodge’s mother was dying from cancer (and completed a week after her death), Fred Can Never Be Called Bald also reflects Dodge’s own awed, stricken response to the material transformation brought about by death, and concludes with Dodge’s own personal contribution to the collage of video clips here gathered.
A sustained, essayistic meditation on the transformation of matter:into new states, new meanings and—via digitization—into the virtual. The title derives from a well-known continuum fallacy—in which a change is said to be impossible because its exact moment of arrival cannot be discerned. Via a distorted collage of YouTube clips, many of which depict extreme physical incidents, the piece attempts to make manifest transformation, to attempt—even if in vain—a better apprehension of the transitive. (500 characters)