Death Plunge (falling selfie)

On 24 August 2016, I stepped onto the edge of the platform of the lighthouse at Westkapelle, Netherlands. I made a selfie video with a laptop. I let go of the laptop. It hit the ground a few seconds later.

Contrary to the common assumption that selfie-taking is tied to agency and controlled self-representation, Death Plunge moves the practice into the realm of discomfort, fear and impending loss of control. Death Plunge also builds on Bas Jan Ader’s short film Broken Fall (geometric), which was recorded in front of the lighthouse of Westkapelle in 1971. Ader’s film, which in turn responds to Piet Mondrian’s paintings of the lighthouse from 1908-10, forms part of a series of works that explore the human body, gravity and falling. Death Plunge reconsiders the falling body in the era of digital self-representation.

cameras: Alexia Manzano, Giel Louws, Jan Ploeger
rigging: Koos Dalstra
coordination: Hans Overvliet, Willy van Houtum
Thanks to Adrie and Leen from the lighthouse crew for their support

© 2024 SPAMM (SuPer Art Modern Museum)

Dev Telmat