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Rhayne Vermette // the space we live in
by Aaron Zeghers // Posted to Cineflyer // Sept 12, 2012

Winnipeg's filmmakers have a long and tortured history of being unabashedly introspective and spectacularly surreal. Emerging filmmaker and photographer Rhayne Vermette embraces these traditions, from the fresh perspective of an architect turned experimental filmmaker.

Vermette’s work has been making the rounds in 2011. Vermette recently travelled to Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival with her film R Seymore Goes North, in addition to having openings at Winnipeg’s Ace Art Gallery and a self-orchestrated photography exhibit on the 4th floor of the legendary punk-rock dive, The Albert. Vermetted also played at WNDX 2010.

Whether her film or photography is concerned, Vermette’s aesthetic is driven by collage. Her long exposure photos are projected into the abandoned hotel rooms they were taken in, and re-photographed with an expressionistic quality that grows from the mouldy floorboards, like spirits roaming these old rooms.

Her films are mostly surreal collages made of constructed sets and figures, painstakingly animated. R Seymore Goes North, originally live action, was filmed digitally and then printed onto paper and animated. Each frame of the film is collaged and stitched back together to triumphant effect.

Despite shooting chiefly on video, Vermette commands an old-school aesthetic and the keen eye of a fledgling architect. Vermette, in her own words, is “heavily interested in the excavation of surreal possibilities within the insipid."

And in true Winnipeg navel-gazing form, Vermette’s latest work focuses on the mundane suburban neighbourhood that she grudgingly calls her home: Fort Richmond.

-Aaron Zeghers