Master Video Series (Part 6, Oblivion)

Part 6. Oblivion

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The master learns to orchestrate oblivion (realms of obscurity, forgetting, disappearance). She plays at nothingness like a music box, knowing when time must perish of itself. We encounter 3 principles of oblivion here:

  1. To summon coldness at will (becoming when one must become indifferent, uncaring, and merciless).
  2. To enter into states of haze (becoming fog, mist, vapor, ghost).
  3. To imagine oneself as the last person on earth (post-apocalyptic solitude, world-extinction).

These are the first forms of oblivion, for which there is only vanishing and aftermath.

The South African visual artist Jane Alexander is known for constructing scenes of elaborate desolation. In these scenes, there are often three creatures looming, and each one a unique example of oblivion.

  1. The Wolf (figure of automatic movement, devouring, and collective brutality).
  2. The Monkey (figure of isolation, wakefulness, and despair).
  3. The Vulture (figure of stillness, hovering, and the wasteland).


Author: Jason Mohaghegh; Video Editor: Ghazal Zamani

Video Credits [Materials Included]: [Part 1] Image 1. Mikael Bertmar. “Dreamvision. The Cemetery.” Nordic Photos/Getty Images. (; Image 2. [Video still] Ron Rosenbaum. “Video of Skull and Bones Ritual.” ABC News, April 2001.; Image 3. Michael Ackerman. Poland, 2005. (; Image 4. Olia Pishchanska. “Inside.” Deviant Art. 2012.(

[Part 2] All images are derived from the visual artwork of Jane Alexander. “Surveys (From the Cape of Good Hope)” at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine. Photos taken by Agaton Strim, The New York Times. Art and Design section. (

Score: Arvo Pärt. “Für Alina No. 3.” 1976. Played by Jeroen van Veen.