- Don’t Call Me Babe // Orange Set
- 2010 // 2012
- Video, color, sound // Mixed media
- 9’09’’ // variable dimensions
- Michele O’Marah
Courtesy of Brennan & Griffin, New York.
Don’t Call Me Babe, 2010
Michele O’Marah’s works are based on Hollywood’s film culture, and render the clichés generated by the city’s entertainment machine visible. O’Marah’s works can be viewed as an extension of the identity and racial politics of the 1990s, which addressed the idea of “the other” and women’s stereotypical role in film culture. The artist’s video pieces focus on existing films and TV series, which are recreated and transformed into low-budget interpretations that often adopt a “kitschy” and exaggerated form of expression. The representation of “reality” construed by Hollywood films is deconstructed with obviously hand-made backdrops and overstated and artificial costumes. The video work Don’t Call Me Baby reconstructs the Pamela Anderson film Barb Wire (1996), but with an African American woman in the role of Barb, wearing Anderson’s iconic leather bodysuit and blonde locks. Barb Wire’s excessively sexual portrayal of women is replicated perfectly in a performance that can be regarded as both parody and homage. O’Marah presents part of the scenography from her version of Barb Wire as an installation titled Orange Set. This backdrop is taken from the scene where Barb Wire uses a mattress to blast a hole in a wall before the shooting scene which concludes with her famous line: “Don’t call me baby.”