Dark Habits is a project that deals with post-truth and how our natural defense mechanism creates false profiles of the people in an attempt to protect ourselves. Inspired by the famous Kuleshov effect, I have interspersed a series of secrets that the portrayed individuals anonymously confessed, which I assigned purely by intuition, with each face. As a result, their faces seem to change expression once these confessions are revealed. In the assembly of the exhibition, I create interchangeable captions specifically designed for the occasion, the viewer could play at guessing and even exchange them to their liking.
The Kuleshov effect is a film editing technique named after Soviet filmmaker Lev Kuleshov. It explores the phenomenon of how the juxtaposition of different shots can create new meaning or evoke specific emotions in the viewer. The effect was discovered and demonstrated by Kuleshov in the early 1920s during the Soviet silent film era.
Kuleshov conducted an experiment where he took a close-up shot of an actor’s neutral face and then edited it together with different shots: a bowl of soup, a coffin, and a woman on a couch. When shown to an audience, they interpreted the actor’s expression differently based on the context of the shots. For example, when the shot of the actor was followed by the bowl of soup, the audience perceived hunger on the actor’s face. When followed by the coffin, they perceived sadness, and when followed by the woman on the couch, they interpreted desire.