Commissioned in 2014 by Cementa 15, Cognitive Dissonance is a video work in three chapters that references the iconic 1980 cult film “The Chain Reaction” and the Ozploitation period of Australian film. It does this as a basis to explore visual ideas about Australian cinema and the changing social structure of Kandos. Filmed in the 1980’s at the peak of the 10ba Tax concession period, and the introduction of the R rating, Chain Reaction was one a number of iconic Australian films that at once lampooned and celebrated Australian culture in a way that more formal cinema did not. At its core Chain Reaction presented a cultural landscape of rural Australia that was a heightened and exaggerated.
The Project involved collaboration with different community groups including local teenagers and members of the local dramatic society, The Twin Town Players. Elements of the cognitive dissonance recall the personal anecdotes of locals who witnessed the filming of the movie and the impact the production had on local life when the production circus was in town. Other elements explore the notion of otherness in a small community and changing relationships with social structure and the environment.
Not a remake, or a reboot Cognitive Dissonance places itself in the world of this vibrant place in Australian cinema.