The Death of Romance
Opening 06.04.16 6-8pm
Artist Talks 28.04.16 6-7pm
The Death of Romance takes place in an imagined future, a dystopia where romance, as we know it, has died. In the two works, Torrie takes the common romantic tropes of our time and reimagines them as lost artefacts—distorted and tainted by nostalgia. In this new world, pleasure—not love—has the highest value.
In these works, Torrie reflects upon the trends evident in our current society: the over-saturation of idealised romanticism in popular culture; the ‘throw-away’ consumerist hijacking of dating by technologies such as Tinder; and the gradual disconnection of humans from interpersonal relationships. Both the works, therefore, look upon ‘traditional romance’ as a kink, a fetish, a soon-to-be marginal practice.
The work I Love You is a peep show booth reimagined: in this peep show it is love—not sex—that is commodified. In Torrie’s imagined future we must ‘pay’ to remember what it is to hear the words ‘I Love You’. The work is immersive and intimate: the audience must sit in the booth and put on headphones to view the artist speaking directly to them. Through repetition and a gradual building to an urgent, uncomfortable crescendo, Torrie ensures all sense is stripped from that significant three-word phrase.
The Tyranny of Pleasure is Torrie’s ode to the clichés of romance. In this video, she takes the traditional romantic accoutrements of chocolates and flowers and strips them of their emotional meaning. With love stripped away, all that remains is the momentary physical pleasure these objects bring. Torrie employs her familiar lycra-clad, masked performer in a grotesque, bizarre, and humorous display of orgiastic excess. The flowers surrounding the video are deliberately left to wither and rot over the month-long exhibition—the wreaths are, even to us now, dated and tacky and just like the first rush of love, quick to die.
Torrie Torrie is an interdisciplinary artist based in Sydney. Her work utilizes a multitude of media including collage, video, animation and performance. She frequently explores the notions of gender, sexuality and the blurred spaces in-between through her art practice. A key theme in Torrie’s recent work is the examination of love and romance; particularly the ways in which modern technologies mediate relationships, and societal changes distort the nature of love. Torrie is attracted to the abject and her work frequently utilizes humour.
Torrie’s work has been shown at festivals such as Nextwave (2008), Perv International film festival (2010) and most recently at Artbar (Oct 2015), a monthly artist-curated event at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney. She is the resident artist at the monthly Sydney based queer party ‘Heaps Gay’, producing projections on commission. Torrie is a third year fine arts student at UNSW’s School of Art and Design.