Emotion Over Raisin

2019, single-channel video, 15’51”

Emotion Over Raisin represents a collective mindfulness meditation session, in which participants are required to gaze upon a raisin and experience it with various bodily sensations before swallowing it down. It is a practice commonly seen in a mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) therapy. On the basis of Waters’ experience in this kind of session, the work reflects the journey of attempt, fail, and living-at-present. The ubiquitous tick-tock sound in the video constantly reminds viewers of the passing of “time” one hardly seizes. Through jump-cut editing of shots, the artist makes a transfer seamlessly from the participants’ outer worlds to their inner worlds, manifesting their loosening minds in the session: the raisins in the hands of the participants start to offer advices on life, followed by the POV shot slowly sunk into the bottom of the sea and the fantasy over a deceased cat. The work challenges the effectiveness of this kind of practice while highlights the seemingly pointless needs in the society – our forced “rebooting” constantly.


UK / 1986 born in Kendal, UK, now living and working in London

Ruth Waters produces mostly motion pictures, animations, audio, and installations, delving the networked society of late capitalism and its impact on people’s anxiety. The commercial alternative therapy and therapeutic language are the motif constantly seen in the work. It signals people’s inner longing for curing instead of the reflection on the root cause of their discomfort. Her video explores how people’s vulnerability is connected to the uncomfortable and intricate globalized economy.

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