Being and Nothingness

Being And Nothingness from Colleen Allen on Vimeo.

In this piece, “Being and Nothingness”, I wanted to explore the idea of physically occupying a space, contrasting physicality and mental “being” and traces. Not only do I physically sit in the space but, I explore how knowledge occupies space as an action, a physical object, sound, and embodiment. I have chosen to explore this concept through reading “Being and Nothingness” by Jean-Paul Sartre. Have never read Sartre, so his concepts and writing were a completely new experience for me. The book is about 900 pages total. I sat and read the book and upon the completion of each page, rip it out of the book and set it in a stack next to me. The pages then transition from the book to the space I occupying, and I explore if knowledge disappears or lingers as we absorb it. I explore the relevance of the physicality of knowledge and how it interacts with the body. Every five minutes a photograph was taken by a volunteer from the perspective from which I felt the text called for. The photographs were then put together into a video format in Adobe Premiere.

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