LA Times: Around The Galleries
December 9, 2006

"Passage and transformation"

Crossing, an absorbing new video installation by Natasa Prosenc, has a beginning and, about five minutes later, an end. Once the instinct to discern some narrative order in the sequence of images is loosely satisfied, that expectation can be dispatched, leaving the piece to work its real power on its own more visceral, metaphoric terms.

In the main space of Overtones, two different but closely related projections appear on opposite walls. A third component is projected at the end of a corridor off the main space. It's possible to view all three elements from one place, but most of the work's effect derives from the two facing projections.

Prosenc studied art in her native Slovenia before coming to the U.S. and earning a master's of fine arts in film and video from CalArts. She divides her time between her native and adopted countries, and Crossing can be read, on one level, as a meditation on passage from one land to another. Images of faces overlaid with rippling, bubbling water follow a brief sequence of bare feet running with thumping urgency. Flight and exile come to mind, but Prosenc's focus on individual faces (a woman's in one projection, a man's in the other) and single, watchful eyes invite a more personal interpretation, having to do with change within the self.

Transformation, even transmutation, is suggested through images of flames licking a hanging body (in the separate, third projection) and squirming patterns in the water that imply corrosion and dissolution of the flesh beneath. Prosenc, who recently completed her first feature film, has created a compeling and concentrated experience in Crossing through layering beauty and decay, placidity and unease, alertness and an unanchored dream state, endurance and acceptance, flight and rest, tension and harmony.