Presented in Spanish and in French with English subtitles and organised by the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa.
Born in Marseilles in 1972, Zinédine Zidane was a member of the French national soccer team that won both the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the Euro 2000 Championship. In Zidane, A 21st-Century Portrait, internationally renowned artists Douglas Gordon (b. Glasgow, Scotland, 1966) and Philippe Parreno (b. Oran, Algeria, 1964) deploy contemporary conventions of mass media both to “paint” a portrait of the soccer star and to expose our cultural creation of, and fascination with, heroes and icons. Filmed in real time during a championship match between Real Madrid and Villarreal on 23 April 2005, the artists worked with a team of film technicians and seventeen cameras positioned throughout Madrid’s Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, instructing each operator to remain fixed on Zidane through the entire match. The resulting installation is a highly edited film containing footage from each of the cameras juxtaposed with raw footage from camera one. The soundtrack comprises the roar of 80,000 cheering fans in thestadium, Spanish television commentary, and original music by the Scottish band Mogwaï, intercut with sounds from the field and stark moments of silence. In a darkened gallery space, the athlete’s every move is projected larger than life on the screen, transforming him into a fascinating object under the scrutiny of our gaze. Gordon and Parreno’s intense survey of the sports hero gives viewers a sense of insight into his inner character, as it examines the cult of celebrity and questions the image as commodity. Zidane is a highly experimental portrait that fuses familiar media and genres, resulting in a radically different experience of spectatorship.
Sponsored by l’APCHQ and l’APCHQ Estrie.