Kate Mitchell, Working it out (infomercial), 2019. High Definition Digital video Colour, Sound, 16:9, edition of 3 + 2AP, 13min 13sec. Courtesy: the artist and Chalk Horse, Sydney.
Working It Out is a multidimensional artwork which takes the form of a video, an installation and a performance. The video is the starting point which mimics a hypnotising infomercial selling a unique and somewhat absurd workout system perfect for use in the comfort of your home. The workout program is pitched to the busy individual who lacks the time to go to the gym but who is well versed in multitasking conflating cleaning with a workout routine utilising weighted household objects.
Variously weighted brooms, vases, pots and pillows take on dual purposes as its user steadily acquires power, strength and agility through performing a sequence of actions within the home space. Pointedly to what end is this covert acquisition of power and strength aimed? And for who is it ultimately for? Why is it fulfilled in this manner away from certain watchful eyes of whom or what?
The quiet accumulation of strength taking place in the domestic space, upon further consideration takes on a more political even urgent tone. This is a covert call to arms, a work which slips through the conceptual backdoor yelling it’s time to take the power back. Under the shiny facade and presentation of the infomercial things are not quite what they seem.
Exhibition Opens: 6–8pm Wednesday 4 September 2019