by Nina Schwanse
Nina Schwanse created the video work Swamp Realness. An edition of 100, each DVD is housed in a hand-painted camouflage case. Spoofing the reality TV preoccupation with authentic cultures, particularly the “Swamp People” of Louisiana’s Cajun country, Schwanse performs dual roles as a British actress and her born-on-the-bayou character. Her footage combines green-screen interviews with on-location filming to create a work that is equal parts real, unreal, and surreal.
In her videos, performances, and web-based projects, Nina Schwanse assumes a range of characters. Literally donning a host of faces, costumes, and personalities, she frequently probes hackneyed gender roles and expectations, particularly in relation to Southern identity, often by means of unpredictable conduct, inane juxtaposition, and utter confusion.