Jessica Gregory and Zen Marie

The Perfect Leader (Video installation, Size variable)

The Perfect Leader (Video installation, Size variable)

Artist's Statement

* Spier Contemporary 2010 Winner: Jessica Gregory and Zen Marie have been awarded career development prizes by the Judges of the Exhibition for this artwork.

The Perfect Leader is a short film that questions political leadership. Specifically, the film addresses the controversial dynamics of the leader as a person, a human being with dreams and desires but also a human with faults.

In part, the film pays homage to Jorgen Leth’s The Perfect Human (1967), which is a surreal and (subtly) cynical look at the idea of a perfect human. The film updates Jorgen Leth’s original and uses it as a vehicle to pose questions about the cult of the individual that is dominant in contemporary leadership practices. Taking both formal and conceptual cues from this iconic film, The Perfect Leader addresses leadership as an ambiguous and problematic space. The Perfect Leader dissects the physical body of the leader (played by Darius Rasekhula) as it asks the audience to reconsider what leadership means. Besides being relevant to a contemporary critique of political governance, the film is a meditation on leadership as space that is paradoxically both private and public.

Artist's Biography

Jessica Gregory: Received her BA in politics and media from the University of Cape Town in 2008 and her Honours Degree in brand leadership from the Vega School of Brand Communications.

Zen Marie: Born: 1980. Lives and works in Johannesburg. He lectured at Vega, the School of Brand Communications, and is currently a fine arts lecturer at the University of the Witwatersrand. Several video and photography exhibitions locally and abroad.
*Zen Marie is a Spier Contemporary 2010 winner for his other work, The Perfect Leader, done in collaboration with Jessica Gregory