Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art: Feminist Art Base: Melanie Manchot


Melanie Manchot. Shave, 2006–2007.

'Shave' is a two-channel synchronised video installation for one projection and one monitor. Slowly, the main camera circles around a seated man, bare chested, who is being shaved by a barber. Over the course of its 75 minute duration the film shows the ritualistic and psychologically intense transformation the man goes through while being wet shaved, from the head down. Simultaneously and in complete synch a second camera films overhead how foam and hair is rinsed in a shaving bowl, registering how the clear water changes and recording the sounds of the shaving knife and the water. Filmed and presented in real time, uncut, the work retains its structural unity. The circling movement of the camera accentuates the sculptural perception of the protagonist while the barber himself seems to draw and erase the lines of the body, revealing a new form in the process.


performance, video, installation, body, gender, hair, shaving, masculinity

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London, London

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London, London E2 8J

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