The third installment in the MIFF Media Forum Expanded Cinema series — Mocumentary: Reality Is Not Enough presents the cutting-edge selection of contemporary art works in the genre formed in-between cinema, video and media art. The exposition curated by Olga Shishko (art director of the MIFF Moscow Media Forum) is compiled of the masterpieces of the modern artists from Russia and abroad, utilizing pseudo documentary and mocumentary strategies in their creative practices. Mocumentary: Reality Is Not Enough poses the question of blurred borders between fiction and reality in the era of media addiction, infoglut and uncritical consumption of data and images.
Mocumentary, a genre long-established and well-known to the audience, gathers significant attention among contemporary artists as an active critical strategy. It first appeared in cinema more than 50 years ago as a complete fiction made in accordance to the documentary rules and complies with the parameters of the quality historical evidence. Just as a well-made documentary film, a mocumentary contains a story supported by facts, witness interviews, play-by-play recordings, material evidence and expert opinions. But in contrast to the qualitative documentary study, mocumentary replaces all the elements of the narrative with false or parody to create a comic effect and becomes a false story from the beginning to the end — events that never happened, fraudulent facts, fake experts and counterfeit records.
Mocumentary: Reality Is Not Enough focuses on the application of the mocumentary practices both as a creative technique and as tool to make an artistic statement. In contemporary art this genre provides an opportunity to question the truth behind the visible and the transmitted and to deconstruct established historical paradigms. With the help of fakes and simulations modern artists play out the wide-spread myths, false stereotypes and generally accepted facts. The main goal of the experiment is the audience self-criticizing, propaganda and disinformation in media, the niceties of the social contract and painful historical experience.
All the artists presented at the Mocumentary: Reality Is Not Enough exhibition work with imperceptible transition from reality to its distorted reflection in the age of television boom, media consumption, and the growing passivity of the audience in fact analysis. They represent a critical overview and an active political position, creating the new legends by means of video, editing, special effects, and dramatizations. And they can turn all the tricks of the documentary into a no-lose weapon of art play for rewriting history, exposing the complexes and defining pain thresholds of individuals, society, eras and nations. Mocumentary: Reality Is Not Enough displays the cutting-edge contemporary art research in the man's place in history, the substitution of reality by skillfully crafted illusions and the boundaries between the historical and political statement.