Man Filam (I am an elephant)

Two Channel Video, HD, 2014, ca. 5:30 minutes

Home
an Filam (I am an elephant)

Man Filam (I am an elephant)

The video is based on one of the characters of “Shahre Ghesseh”, the elephant that becomes the main character of a video performance by Shahram Entekhabi that is displayed on one of the two video channels. He is wearing an elephant head-mask that goes through a number of metamorphoses, with his trunk and ears removed and/or displaced. The other video channel shows a clown character, also performed by Entekhabi, that constantly interrogates the elephant. The dialogue between the two is reduced to a minimum: While the clown character constantly asks the elephant who he is, the elephant permanently answers “I am an elephant”. The video refers to the subject of “otherness” and its categorical rejection by the majority as one of the main aspects of the tale “Shahre Ghesseh”.

By adding the clown character to the scene, Entekhabi characterises the rejection of the other as something dull and inappropriate, while the elephant in its permanent verbal self-affirmation (despite the attempts of the others to make him change) develops resilience and becomes a metaphor of resistance.