Dirty Pretty Things

by Staff SOURCE Nowness
Photo Credit: Andrea Pola

Aspiring actress Sarah Liisborg inhabits the role of voyeuristic neighbor in Lisa Rovner’s short Abstract Expressionism, her nuanced reactions hinting at the risqué payoff of eavesdropping.

“The film is about initiating the viewer as an active participant rather than merely a consumer,” says Rovner, a Franco-American writer and artist based in Paris. Rovner invited Liisborg to star in the piece after spotting her at the APC boutique in the Marais, where Liisborg works as a sales assistant. “The film started with my fascination with Sarah's face, of wanting to record that pure beauty," she explains. The director read three texts aloud to her muse while capturing her reactions: Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, a recording of Judy Garland recounting her feminist leanings, and a love letter by erotic writer and performer David Piper. In the end, it was Piper’s musings that resulted in the most provocative cinema. Previewed above, the film will be presented in full for Rovner’s debut solo exhibition in New York, Dear Reader, on view at No. 10 Gallery beginning July 12th.