[ISEA97] Artist Statement: Rachel Schreiber – Please Kill Me; I’m a Faggot Nigger Jew

Artist Statement

At the opening of this tape, the viewer enters the Internet along with the producer, who uses a pseudonym in order to interview peple who engage in a highly problematic and taboo practice — Nazi-fetish based sadomasochism. The artist uses video images created directly on the computer, and stories from the archive of her own memory to ask such questions as: How does history affect the body? How are cultural memories transmitted? And, when historical events become part of a culture’s discourse, how does the meaning of the original event shift? Because all of the interviews for this highly experimental documentary were conducted on the Internet, the tape also questions both traditional documentary practice, and the virtual construction of identity on the Internet.

  • Rachel Schreiber (U.S.A.) is a video artist, photographer, writer, and professor. She received her MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in 1995, and in 1995-96 she participat­ed in the Whitney Independent Study Program in New York. Currently, she teaches photography, video, and digital imaging at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, Indiana. Schreiber has been making work on issues of Jewish American identity since 1990. Much of her work has focused on a critique of how representations of the Holocaust effect contemporary conditions of desire. Her most recent videotape, Please Kill Me; I’m a Faggot Nigger Jew, is an investigation of the practice of Nazi-fetish based sadomasochism. All of the interviews for this experimental documentary were conducted on the Internet, and the majority of the imagery was shot onto the Macintosh using a Connectix camera. Schreiber’s videotapes have screened internationally at such venues as the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival, the New York Video Festival, the Women in the Director’s Chair Film and Video Festival in Chicago, the New York Gay and Lesbian Film and Video Festival, the London Jewish Film Festival, and the World Wide Video Festival in The Hague,The Netherlands. Her writing has been published nationally in such journals as the New Art Examiner and Davka: Jewish Cultural Revolution.