The video works of the Swiss artist, Annalies Strba range loosely around the landscape genre. Her works are aesthetically beautiful, their slightly blurred, dream-like quality is accentuated by subtle soundtracks, which use ambient electronic sound. In Ã…n 5 The Lost Garden (1999) we wander around an Elysian garden, overflowing with summer blooms, the soft focus could be kitsch, but somehow transcends this as the slow pan, at the same height as the flowers, generates a mystical aura, time slows down and holds us in its thrall. In mood this relates closely to her 1997 video work Koi, which focuses on a sacred Koi carp pool in Kyoto, Japan. The large, brightly coloured carp glide gracefully through the water; they have a timeless quality, and become ethereal, dissolving into abstract pulses of colour as the camera zooms in. This fascinating, hypnotic spectacle makes compelling viewing. A more recent work, Ã…n IV (1999), features an otherworldly languid scan across the skyline of Manhattan, the skyscrapers drifting in and out of frame like phantom ships.
Annalies Strba’s work is exhibited at the Frith Street Gallery, 60 Frith Street, London W1, until 27 April.