Stanya Kahn
Stand in the Stream
October 16–28, 2020

HD color video stereo sound
60 minutes and 24 seconds
Edition of 6, 2 AP
Courtesy of the artist and Vielmetter Los Angeles
Copyright Stanya Kahn


“The dialectical image is an image that emerges suddenly, in a flash. What has been is to be held fast—as an image flashing up in the now of its recognizability.”
—Walter Benjamin, The Arcades Project


Stand in the Stream (2011­–17) is an ambient digital feature film shot on multiple camera formats over the course of six years. The film’s vast and varied footage—all shot live or screen-captured during livestreams by Kahn in real time—is edited to create a visceral reflection of life, power, and uprising in late capitalism. As the film travels through cities and wilderness, domestic and public spaces, online chat-rooms and home movies, it is framed by the decline and death of the artist’s mother—a shipyard electrician and activist—with glimpses of Kahn’s own experience of motherhood and the toil of daily life. Stand in the Stream situates these intimacies within the shift of political and digital landscapes over time, revealing many intersections of the personal and the political. With a soundscore constructed to draw the epic from the mundane—Stand in the Stream plays back capitalism’s acculturation of our very personhood while bringing forth insistent images of our resistance and resilience against it.


Stand in the Stream was screened in the Ezra and Cecile Zilkha Gallery and streamed online from October 16-October 28, 2020. 


Further reading:


Travis Diehl, “Stanya Kahn”, Frieze, May 11, 2017


Related Events:


Stanya Kahn: Artist Talk