Josh & Zak Sandler

Josh and Zak are Brooklyn based artists who come from distinct creative backgrounds – Zak is trained in modern drama and performance while Joshua studied photography and video. As teenagers the two brothers began collaborating on photography projects as a means to subvert a reality marked by alienating social constructs and a dysfunctional family. These early works, steeped in adolescent psychosexual energy, documented the fantasy, inhibition and intimacy shared between family and close friends. They now work predominantly in performance-based video. The photographic sensibilities that permeate their video work, employing techniques fashioned for stretching out and locking in to highly emotional/visceral moments, were developed in large part during their adolescent collaborations. The Brothers aim to capture a general state of alienation, and the protective worlds people create in the midst of oppressive or tumultuous circumstances.

Don't Worry Mom. The work presents a sort of dysfunctional family theater wherein the artists both confront and escape from the mental landscape of their upbringing in upper middle class suburban America. These videos were all filmed using green screen, informed by the aesthetic and feel of children's tv. Josh and Zak intend to create an environment where they can act out on their most absurd fantasies, where they can feel safe, exhibit childish behavior and where they can also exercise and work out personal problems. The videos in this exhibition intend to create awkward situations that might feel like real situations we have found ourselves in but with a "bang your head against the wall over and over" spin that people who struggle within themselves might be able to relate to.

Exhibition at National Film Board, Médiathéque, Toronto, Canada, in the framework of aluCine Festival.