Death Throes 2016
T. R. Carter and Stephen Gilette Video 11:08 mins

Every living thing is meant by nature to go through a cycle of growth, activity in its prime, and decay leading to death.  For human beings the initial stage of this lifecycle – childhood – provides us with our first understandings of the last – death.  As much as a child is shielded from the reality of death, their reaction to death is more natural – unencumbered by the mythology and ritual that adults surround it with as a matter of survival. For western children of the 1980’s and 90’s a group of seminal cultural artefacts form the foundation of an almost universal rite of passage.  The movies and television shows of that era provide a common point of reference and collective nostalgia. A nostalgia that helps them deal with the death of their own childhoods. Amongst these artefacts some of the most potent images are images of death. From the death of Mufasa in The Lion King to the death of The Skeksis Emporor in The Dark Crystal, these images have been etched into the collective memory of a generation. Death Throes explores the imagery of death within childhood cultural media.  The work is a recreation of the drowning of Artax in The Neverending Story as the artists perform the death throes of their own childhoods.

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