START POINT PRIZE – Prize for emerging artists

Marijke DeRoover

What can one write about when the artist hides behind a mask and constructs fictional identities? Warhol created his own public identity but Marijke De Roover goes further and gets lost in her multiple roles to such a degree that it is unclear whether she exists at all. Can we find the artist on the internet? Only as a participant in a Belgian competition called The Voice, but her profile on Soundcloud, for example, gets lost behind a dozen cover versions which reveals nothing besides her voice. And it is her voice which, modified by the Songify app, is so attractive in her video, like the calliope-like voice of a Siren. In her emotionally charged, sometimes excited, other times melancholic tone, De Roover “sings“ what is impossible to sing – a Facebook communication about Sarah Palin. What is true here and what is fiction? It is not important because the combination of impersonal technological communication and politics with the media of pop culture gives the work an unexpected urgency, for the technological manipulation itself is irresistible. After Palin, will there be a new obsession for De Roover? Jessica Lang, for example, who now dominates her profile on Tumblr? And why does her work repeatedly refer to the excessive use of alcohol? What is the artist hiding? (RV)