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In Ictu Oculi

In Ictu Oculi

Greta Alfaro
In Ictu Oculi


Single channel video (HDV, 16:9, colour, sound)

Duration: 10:37
From its title (meaning "in the blink of an eye") onwards, Greta Alfaro’s In Ictu Oculi is concerned with the viewer’s experience of time: the eye is yours. The work’s title, which alludes to the brevity of human existence, is shared with a number of vanitas paintings from the seventeenth century, and, like them, Alfaro’s video treats the stuff that surrounds us as coded references to our own demise. A dinner table, laden with plates of food and wine bottles, its chairs waiting to be occupied, stands in a scrubby, semi-mountainous landscape, a breeze flickering its tablecloth. The table’s placement, in the centre of the frame (the shot is still), makes unmistakeable allusion to painted conventions – the Last Supper, the Supper at Emmaus. And yet the occupants, when they arrive, transform the table’s Biblical and epicurean suggestions into something nightmarish and deathly. The stilled moment of the painted meal becomes subject to cinematic time: movement is change. Vultures descend, from nowhere, their bulk and scrabble bringing instability to the implied order of the scene. Yet the meal’s duration, and its strange quietness (aside from the flapping of wings and chink of claw on plate) lend it a human quality: this might be the soundtrack to a medieval banquet. The birds here, like Hitchcock’s, act out repressed human desires (to gorge oneself): they’re us, with the mask off.

Text by Ben Street

Other artists in
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Caroline Achaintre    Rebecca Ackroyd    Markus Amm    Helene Appel    Ivan Argote    Dan Attoe    Michael Bauer    Diann Bauer    Dan Bayles    Simon Bedwell    Anna Freeman Bentley    Emilia Bergmark    Katherine Bernhardt    Gabriele Beveridge    Richard Billingham    Gabriella Boyd    Sarah Braman    Matti Braun    Bozidar Brazda    Jonny Briggs    David Brooks    Joey Bryniarska    Agnieszka Brzezanska    Peter Linde Busk    Pierre Carreau    Loz Chalk    Ronin Cho    James Clarkson    Lucy Coggle    Andy Collins    Inez de Coo    Jessica Craig-Martin    Ana Cvorovic    Nathan Cash Davidson    Ian Davis    Nicholas Dedics    Tomory Dodge    Robert Dowling    Stef Driesen    Colden Drystone    Howard Dyke    Ara Dymond    Judith Eisler    David Ellis    Annabel Emson    Ayan Farah    Carlos Noronha Feio    Dee Ferris    Mia Feuer    Luc Fuller    Michael Fullerton    Dmitri Galitzine    Julia Goldman    NoĂ©mie Goudal    Elias Hansen    Hilary Harnischfeger    Chris Hawtin    Richard Höglund    Kati Heck    Valerie Hegarty    Stefanie Heinze    David Herbert    Patrick Hill    Dan Holdsworth    Phillipa Horan    Shara Hughes    David Humphrey    Tom Hunter    Jessica Jackson Hutchins    Merlin James    Tillman Kaiser    Alice Könitz    Scott King    John Korner    Rannva Kunoy    Liane Lang    Molly Larkey    Paul Lee    Andrea Lehmann    Juliette Losq    Joshua Lake & Luke Evans    Christina Mackie    Jill Mason    Claire McArdle    Ella McCartney    Lucy McKenzie    Jill McKnight    Martin McMurray    Turay Mederic    Robert Melee    Aleksandra Mir    Ian Monroe    Kristine Moran    Eduard Moreno    Yasumasa Morimura    Luisa Mota    Nick Nowicki    William J. O'Brien    Matt O'dell    Marco Palmieri    Selma Parlour    Oliver Perkins    Dustin Pevey    Marius Pfannenstiel    Benedetto Pietromarchi    Alejandra Prieto    Arthur Prior    Laure Prouvost    Max Prus    Neil Raitt    Sean Raspet    Brian Reed    Florian Roithmayr    Ruth Root    Jessica Sanders    Stefan Sandner    Hideyuki Sawayanagi    Amba Sayal-Bennett    Lara Schnitger    Maaike Schoorel    Anne Kathrin Schuhmann    Michael Schultz    Macrae Semans    Conrad Shawcross    Jamie Shovlin    Agathe Snow    Renee So    Anne Speier    Jeni Spota    Roman Stanczak    Martina Steckholzer    Jack Strange    Miriam Sweeney    Emma Talbot    Mateo Tannatt    Stephanie Taylor    Adam Thompson    Rafal Topolewski    Ryan Trecartin    Nobuko Tsuchiya    Marianne Vitale    Caroline Walker    John Wallbank    Ben Washington    Chuck Webster    Aaron Wexler    Poppy Whatmore    Julia Whiting    Jenny Wiener    Alexi Williams    Susanne M. Winterling    Saskia Olde Wolbers    Jonas Wood    Joel Wyllie     Yeesookyung    Haeri Yoo

Greta Alfaro's BIOGRAPHY

Greta Alfaro
Born in 1977, Pamplona, Spain.
Lives and works in London, UK


A Window to the World. Curated by Juri Yamashita. MoCA Hiroshima, Japan.

A Very Crafty and Tricky Contrivance. A commission by the Genesis Foundation. Fish and Coal Building, Kings Cross, London. *
InvenciĂłn. Curated by Andrea Paasch. Museum Ex Teresa Arte Actual, Mexico City.
Fall On Us, And Hide Us. Curated by Alba Braza Böils. Spazio Vault, Prato, Italy.

ELOGIO DE LA BESTIA. Centro de arte contemporáneo Huarte, Pamplona, Spain.*

In Ictu Oculi. Prize El Cultural de FotografĂ­a. Marta Cervera Gallery. Madrid, Spain.
In Ictu Oculi. Curated by Antonia Gaeta. Carpe Diem Art & Research. Lisbon, Portugal.
In Ictu Oculi. Curated by Itxaso Mendiluze. Centro Cultural Bastero. Andoain, Spain.

Ricorrenza. Curated by Alba Braza. Dryphoto arte contemporanea. Prato, Italy.
S/T. Magatzems Wall & Video. Valencia, Spain.

CelebraciĂłn. Curated by Kamen Nedev. LiquidaciĂłn Total. Madrid, Spain.
Budapest-Viena. Curated by José Luis Pérez Pont. Exhibition Hall of Picassent. Valencia, Spain.*
CelebraciĂłn. Exhibition Hall of Mislata. Valencia, Spain. *
Ciudades y Fantasmas. Recortables. El Castillo. Requena, Spain. *

Ciudades y Fantasmas. Centre Civic Antic Sanatori. Sagunto, Spain. *
Ciudad de papel. Tentaciones. Estampa Art Fair. Madrid, Spain. *


Moving Image Video Art Fair. Curated by Murat Orozobekov and Edward Winkleman. New York.
Punto de Vista, International Documentary Film Festival of Navarra. X Films Projects.
Rule of 3. It Will Happen Again. Curated by Gass Pendergast. Islington Mill, Manchester, UK.

Whitechapel Open. Whitechapel Gallery, London.*
Catlin Art Prize. Curated by Justin Hammond. Londonewcastle Project Space. London.*
Drama, Baby, Drama. Curated by Christiane Kuhlmann. Kunsthaus Essen, Germany.
Chassez le naturel. Curated by Olivier Beaudet. La Vitrine, Limoge, France.
Arco Madrid 2012. Gallery ProjectB Milan. Madrid.*
Ristruttura. Curated by Lorenzo Durantini. ProjectB, Milan, Italy. *
London Art Fair. Art Projects’ Screening Program. Curated by Pryle Behrman. London.
Candid Berlin. Curated by Candid Arts Trust London. Universität der Künste, Berlin, Germany.
Is this Spain. Curated by Pensart. Instituto Cervantes Dublin, Ireland and Krakow, Poland.
Hackney Wicked Presents an evening of artists films and performance. Curated by Laura May Lewis. Sugarhouse studios, London.
Fresh Produce. Curated by Serena Bentley. Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne, Australia.
MIA Screening Series. Comisariada por Alanna Simone. Pasadena Center for the Arts. Pasadena, California.
X Festival Miden 2012. Kalamata, Greece.
Indexes and Other Figures. Curated by Impossible Colour. Kaleidoskop, Berlin and gallery Kathedra - Photomonth 2012, Krakow, Poland. *

Internacional Film Festival Rotterdam.
Bêtes off. Curated by Claude d’Anthenaise. Conciergerie, Paris. *
Rencontres Internacionales Paris/Berlin/Madrid. Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin and Auditorio del Ministerio de Cultura, Madrid.
Inanimate Beings. Inéditos. Curated by Bárbara Rodríguez Muñoz. La Casa Encendida, Madrid.*
Video Art Touring Festival-Reasons Why We Still Need Superman. Curated by Tim Crowley. Casa M. 8th Mercosul Biennial. Porto Alegre, Brasil. Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales. Montevideo, Uruguay, Casa Tres Patios, MedellĂ­n, Colombia.
Show RCA 2011. Royal College of Art, London.*
Video Art from the Igal Ahouvi Art Collection. Fresh Paint Contemporary Art Fair. Tel Aviv, Israel.
Bestes, Bestiaux et Bestioles. Curated by Dominique Pineau. Château d’Oiron, France.
Espectacle/Obstacle. Curated by SuperKaleidoscope. Firstdraft Gallery, Surry Hills, Australia.*
Spectacle/Obstacle. Curated by SuperKaleidoscope. Westpace. Melbourne, Australia.
Visionary Trading Project. Curated by Bárbara Rodríguez Muñoz, Mary Cork and Margarita Dorovska. Guest Projects, London.
Ffilm 2. Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea.
Is This Spain? Curated by Colectivo Pensart. Instituto Cervantes, Milano, Roma and Napoli in Italy and Brasilia, in Brasil.
Martinha Maia & Greta Alfaro. The Mews Project Space, London.
Prix Leica 2010 Marta Museum Herford, Bielefeld, Germany. *
Re:Control. Curated by Lorenzo Durantini. Limelight Club building, London.
28 Reasons why we still need Superman. Curated by Tim Crowley. Mildura, Australia.
Una habitaciĂłn propia. Curated by Carmen Dalmau. Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain.
AND Festival, Artists’ stalls. Curated by FACT. Egremont, Uk
Animal Gaze Returned. Curated by Rosemarie McGoldrick. London Metropolitan University.
Videorama. Werkleitz Gesellschaft, Germany.
Vitrine. Curated by Film CoLab. White Night-Nuit Blanche Brighton, Uk.
Book Launch of Ristruttura, catalogue edited for the exhibition of the same name in Milano in 2012. Edel Assanti Gallery, London.

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2010. ICA London and A Foundation Liverpool.
Rencontres Internacionales Paris/Berlin/Madrid. Centre Pompidou, Paris, France.
Big Screen Project. NADA Art Fair. Miami, USA.
Peep Show. Artbus. Tours & Video Screenings During Art Basel Miami Beach. Curated by Maja Ciric. Miami, USA.
Album. Curated by Morgan Quaintance. Wolstenholme Space. Independents Liverpool Biennial. Liverpool.
I See Myself There Where I Am Not. Curated by Mary Cork. Forman’s Smokehouse. Hackney Wicked Festival. London.
Conceal From Your Eyes. Curated by Eduardo GarcĂ­a Nieto. Centro Cultural Bastero, Andoain, Spain.
Homero, Iliada de Alessandro Baricco. Video screening curated by Mariano Navarro for an event of SEACEX. Teatro MarĂ­a Guerrero and Caixa Forum, Madrid.
Saber estar. Curated by Alba Braza. Vault. Prato, Italy.
The Vulture Tick. Video screening curated by Rut Blees Luxemburg. Guest Projects. London.

Grande hazaña! Con muertos! Curated by Mariano Navarro. Sala Puerta Nueva, Córdoba, Spain.*
Is This Spain? Curated by Colectivo Pensart. The Crypt Gallery, London. *
Periferias. Curated by Rafa Tormo. Old town of Valencia, Spain.
Nimiedades. Curated by Juan José Martín Andrés. Sala La Perrera, Valencia, Spain.
La que tiene boca se equivoca. Curated by Marta Rebollo. Sala la Perrera. Valencia, Spain.