Rachel Rose’s first video work Sitting Feeding Sleeping takes us to various sites that are connected to ideas of evolution, mortality and permanence; namely, different zoos across America, a robotics perception lab, and a cryonics lab, where dead bodies are frozen at low temperature in the hope of a future resurrection.
By intercutting between those sites, the artist examines presentday concepts of existence and compares artificial means of conserving and prolonging life to how we live today. In doing so, she recognises in each site a common limbo between being alive and dead, and an abstraction from our environment. In contrast with the detached surroundings captured in the imagery, Rose’s own voice in the voice-over in Sitting Feeding Sleeping is poetic, intimate, and conveys a personal reflection on the artist’s subject matter. Technically, Rose’s style of editing in this work –from collaging filmed and found footage, to distorting audio and image– is emblematic of the filmic techniques she develops in later works.