Changeling, The

2006

b&w tinted, mono
2 channel
2 lcd monitors, 2 media players, 1 built-in audio speaker

The Changeling is a two-channel digital installation comprised of a found cache of old school portraits of Japanese girls. One screen shows a constant stream of nearly 200 individual portraits while the other displays a single picture accompanied by the voice of an anonymous woman reflecting on her life. With each presentation this work itself changes slightly as the spoken text is translated and then spoken by a local actress, in this case the renowned English actress Fiona Shaw. The voice-over narration transforms static portraiture into a lyric meditation on childhood, memory and loss. The narrator becomes a ‘changeling’, shifting her identity to image herself as her mother, her grandmother and the girl depicted in the photograph. The Changeling draws on notions of the documentary and the archive and addresses issues of collective identity, memory and displacement.

Credits

English version (voice-over spoken by Fiona Shaw)   
Dutch version (voice-over spoken by Johanna ter Steege)
German version (spoken by Hanna Schygulla)
Danish version (spoken by Birgitte Raaberg)
Swedish version (spoken by Anita Björk)
Canadian English version (spoken by Martha Burns)
Norwegian version (spoken by Andrine Sæther)
Finnish version (spoken by Outi Maenpaa)
Japanese version (spoken by Junko Uchida)