video and moving image works
Using ‘exquisite corpse’, a method by which each collaborator adds to a composition in sequence, the filmmaker began her journey over the Vietnam War’s notorious Ho Chi Minh Trail.
This interconnected system of jungle roads connecting the North with the South was instrumental for the eventual victory of the Vietnamese communists from the North over the American-backed Southern regime in 1975. Tens of thousands of people died along this trail during the war as it was heavily bombed by the American army. Along these roads, the filmmaker asked local villagers to contribute their tales while the camera was observing their present-day life, merging past with present, reality with fiction, in her effort to assemble a piece of collective history, a history told by the people from the bottom up.
Single channel video, 25:00, color, sound
Women in Between: Asian Women Artists 1984-2012, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Okinawa Prefecture Art Museum, Tochigi Prefecture Art Museum of Fine Arts, Mie Prefectural Art Museum, Japan
TRACES, an art exhibition reinvestigating Social Memory in Southeast Asia, curated by Gridthiya Gaweewong, Jim Thompson Art Center, Bangkok
Oberhausen International Short Film Festival 2011
Bangkok Experimental Film Festival 2012
DMZ International Documentary Film Festival 2011, Korea
The Making of the New Silk Roads, ArtHub, Bangkok
[…] Reflecting the remnants and legacy of the Vietnam War, Nguyen Trinh Thi‘s A Chronicle of a Tape Recorded Over was improvised along the Ho Chi Minh Trail, a series of routes through the country and neighboring Laos and Cambodia developed by the Vietcong and North Vietnamese Army. Nguyen TrinhThi, inspired by Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Mysterious Object At Noon, invited people along the route to tell her part of a fictional story that would be developed by others during the journey. Diverging from this initial premise the film is a rich and compelling series of encounters, with abandoned communities and monuments, people still living with the legacy of the war, distant memories of resistance and forgotten sacrifices. The title can be interpreted as a comment on historical amnesia in the region and more directly in relation to the filmmakers arrest mid-project for working without a permit. Amazingly Thi filmed part of the interrogation, in which we hear the police discuss their difficulties in controlling filmmaking in the region and how the way the country is depicted. […]
(by George Clark, LUX London 2012)