New Television Workshop Collection

New Television Workshop Collection Program MaterialsNew Television

Video clip of Confessions of a Chameleon

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Confessions of a Chameleon

1 videoreel of 1 (29:59 min.) : sd., col. ; 1 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (Betacam SP) (29:59 min.) : sd., col. ; 1/2 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (VHS) (29:59 min.) : sd., col. ; 1/2 in.
1 videocassette of 1 (29:59 min.) : sd., col. ; 3/4 in.
1 folder

Copyright Date:

Copyright Holder:
Lynn Hershman

Hershman, Lynn

It was aired as part of Episode 306 of the 1987 "New Television" season.

An 8 X 10 black-and-white photographic print shows a still image from the work, shot off the monitor. Includes a 1" master, Betacam SP preservation master, and VHS and 3/4" screening copies.

"Confessions of a Chameleon," by Lynn Hershman, is approximately eight minutes long. The video features the narration of a single woman who tells multiple and overlapping autobiographical stories. At the onset of the work, she tells the audience that as a child she used fantasy to escape the abusive reality of her home life, inventing elaborate stories. This introduction casts a shadow of doubt over the stories she proceeds to tell, which include accounts of attending college at the age of 12, working as a call girl, and spending several years in a hospital on the brink of death. The woman describes her practice of taking on, or impersonating, many personalities. The editing technique is one of interruption. Before a story comes to completion, the work will cut to another image of the same woman, in slightly different apparel, telling another story. Often, the same image appears in multiples, or several unique images appear at once. All of the work is shot in varying degrees of close-ups. The narrator continues to confuse the viewer, as at the end of the work when she claims, "I always tell the truth." There is very little credit information about the work as it appears in Episode 306.

Hershman, Lynn

Hershman, Lynn

Hershman, Lynn
English, Lisa
Sweeney, Skip (Proteus Editor)

See Also:
New Television, Episode 306 (1987)

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