Paul Pfeiffer’s video works utilize digital manipulations to capture and decontextualize mass media spectacles, implicating the viewer in all of us. Pfeiffer’s editing emphasizes particular movements to imbue the figures’ actions with layered meanings—ebullience turns to rage and celebration into attack. Referencing French philosopher, Guy Debord’s 1967 treatise The Society of the Spectacle, Pfeiffer’s work compels the viewer to question whether media is «other» to community or if, as individuals, we are complicit in its success.
Pfeiffer continues his investigation of the spectacle of the media with three new video works. Pfeiffer alters and represents images from a pop music video, a beauty pageant, and a professional basketball game. Through the generous support of the San Antonio Spurs, Pfeiffer was granted access to the SBC Center where he filmed not only the players but the support staff. The resulting video isolates an armed security guard thus inverting one’s gaze from the event itself to the peripheral action.