Pascal Robert



‘Miro’, 2008, Video 3 min, DV, black and white

In ancient Greek drama, the protagonist was the first or leading actor. The poet Thespis is credited with having invented tragedy when he introduced this first actor into Greek drama, which formerly consisted only of choric dancing and recitation. The protagonist stood opposite to the chorus and engaged in an interchange of  questions and answers. According to Aristotle in his Poetics, Aeschylus brought in a second actor, deuteragonist, and presented the first dialogue between two characters. Aeschylus’ younger rival, Sophocles, then added a third actor, the tritagonist, and was able to write more complex, more natural dialogue. The fact that there were only three actors did not limit the number of characters to three because an actor would play more than one character. According to Sisyphus destiny which was mirrored in tragedies by Aeschylus, Sophocles as well as Euripides, Albert Camus wrote the philosophical essay «The Myth of Sisyphus», published in 1942, in which he introduced the idea of “aceptance without resignation”, and in which he asked if man kind can “live without appeal”, defining a “conscious revolt” against the avoidance of absurdity of the world.  In the last chapter, Camus outlines the legend of Sisyphus who defied the gods and put Death in chains so that no human needed to die. When Death was eventually liberated and it came time for Sisyphus himself to die, he concocted a deceit which let him escape from the underworld. Finally captured, the gods decided on his punishment: for all eternity, he would have to push a rock up a mountain on the top, the rock rolls down again and Sisyphus has to start over. «The struggle itself towards the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart.”

“Anatomy of a man’s concept”, 2009, video still no 19 from colour video, 2 min
(special thanks goes to David Galloway, Cris Faria and Paula Mueller)

‘בְּרֵאשִׁית’ (Anfang), 2004/ 2010, Video 4’53” min, colour/ DV, no sound channel, loop