Tim Lee

Funny Face, George & Ira Gershwin, 1927

2002
Tim Lee revisits key moments in the lives and works of various cultural icons - in this case George and Ira Gershwin - and re-enacts them for the camera. Neither musician nor performer, he relies on visual effects such as repetition, multiplication and fragmentation of his body, facilitated through either video or photography, to play the roles. Here, Lee films himself from the shoulders up, moving to the music of the Gershwin’s "Funny Face" - a song penned by the sons of Russian-Jewish immigrants, made famous by a white male American singer and later re-recorded by a female African-American - while an anonymous, Caucasian torso plays the guitar below. By inserting his Asian-Canadian identity, Lee offers us a remixed version of cultural history that points to both the unfixed nature of historical narratives and how the artist himself fits into them.
Artist
Title
Funny Face, George & Ira Gershwin, 1927
Date
2002
Medium
Time-Based Media
Materials
2 channel digital video installation, 3:24 minutes
Nationality
Canadian
Credit line
Purchased 2005
Accession number
41747.1-2