Go Through the Motions (1975)


Marshall, Stuart
  • Duration: 8 mins

    Year: 1975

    Original formats:

    1/2 inch EIAJ reel-to-reel

    Media types:


    Type of work:

    Single Screen


    “An extreme close-up of a mouth is used to examine speech patterning, perception of mime, vocal cavity resonation and the electronic fracturing of speech. Mouth Works is composed by three works: Going Through the Motions, Arcanum and Mouth Room.”  Video Artists on Tour catalogue , 1980, Arts Council.

    “………Stuart Marshall, though handling his work somewhat differently, comes to similar conclusions when he says that his tapes called Go Through the Motions , Just a Glimpse and Arcanum all examine the interrelations of the image and sound tracks and challenge the notion that any system of representation can simply re-present’. Go Through the Motions (1975) is probably the earliest of his tapes shown, yet for me remains one of the strongest. Briefly, it shows a close-up of his mouth throughout the duration apparently repeating the words ‘Saying one thing and meaning another’ (in fact he is miming to a pre-recorded sound loop). As his lips attempt to synchronise with the sound they purposefully move almost imperceptibly in and out of phase with it. The viewer is, almost hynotically, induced into at once attempting to assimilate sound and vision according to his preconditioned subconscious, yet simultaneously conscious of the purposeful disparity, not only of sound and vision but of system and actual context.”
    David HallVideo Report on Artists Video at The Galleries, Washington Tyne and Wear, 18-30 October 1976. First published in Studio International, Jan 1977

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