Day 9 | Stephanie Lempert

My work questions and examines different methods of communication and the various roles communication plays in our society. I concentrate on deconstructing conversations and analyzing different methods of recoding and depicting conversation. I explore communication through different systems and patterns allowing the viewer to see the underlying threads which create this form of human interaction.

I approach my subject matter through object making, video and installation. Recently, I have been using video as a means of studying and working with conversation. Video, sound and other elements are incorporated into my installations, creating an environment that the viewer can enter into and become immersed in. My work invites viewers to become active participants, challenging and questioning their role as “viewer.” Likewise, my work depends on the public’s participation, and I am particularly intrigued by the prospect of working with people who are not normally involved in the arts.

By concentrating on different existing systems of communication and inventing new ones I am able to reevaluate the collective understanding of communication processes within our culture.

Read My Lips, 2005 – 3:00 Minutes
courtesy of Claire Oliver Gallery

Read My Lips is a video piece that addresses the role of language as a method of communication through the anthropomorphization of the common goldfish. I worked with speech pathologist Beatrice Dulgarian to decipher the words being “spoken” by each fish, drawing attention to our use of language and its interpretation within our society.


Dog Tale is a video piece that addresses the idea that animals communicate by means unnoticed by humans. I sync footage of a dog’s tale with Morse code tones to create the illusion that the tail is communicating with the viewer through Morse code. This video draws attention to the possibility that animals are trying to communicate through many different methods.

Dog Tale, 2006 – 1:06 Minutes
courtesy of Claire Oliver Gallery



In this piece, I was playing with comparing human conversation with similar patterns found in nature. I found that the ebb and flow of the waves had a interesting connection to the pattern of conversation. The audio of humans talking at the beach was combined with the audio of the waves, matching the patterns through the changing audio levels. Ebb and Flow represents the one of many similarities humans and nature have through the ways we communicate.

Ebb and Flow, 2007 – 3:17 Minutes
courtesy of Claire Oliver Gallery


A Yellow-Breasted Scissor-Billed Duet is based on the common practice of antiphonal dueting in birds, a practice that often goes unnoticed and unappreciated in NYC. This video calls upon the tendency and necessity of all animals in the world to communicate, especially between the male and female of species. It also pokes fun at the assumptions of the audience, getting across the major point that communication is an integral part of our lives in a semi humorous way.

A Yellow-Breasted Scissor-Billed Duet, 2006 – :40 Seconds
courtesy of Claire Oliver Gallery


Stephanie Lempert – New York New York

8 thoughts on “Day 9 | Stephanie Lempert

  1. I really enjoyed the gold fish one i really chuckled to my self in the hallway watching these fish talking in a way i really thought that the matching up was great. It really made it more focused on what they were saying or trying to say then the quality of the piece its self.

  2. My roommate is a speech pathology major and I dragged her down here to watch the fish video. She really liked it. I really enjoy the fact that art is a form of communication and these videos are about forms of communication that are somewhat ignored, speech pathology, morse code, etc., represented through a medium that permeates our lives.

  3. I love how she includes humor in her work, but she also has meaning behind it along with the light hearted humor style of the videos. Sometimes I feel like one of these goldfish when I’m trying to talk to someone, I’m trying to communicate but the person I’m talking to isn’t really listening they just hear what I hear when watching this video.

  4. I happen to love the fish/communication videos. I enjoy the humor and wit the different fishes express. I think that her projects are relatable even if one didn’t speak english and just had the exposure to these subjects.

  5. “Dog Tale” kind of brightened my day when i saw it; i love dogs. the morse code mixed with a wagging tail was absurd, and after a viewer gets past the humor, i think they remember their own experiences with pets or animals and the kind of subtle communication they possess.

  6. Read My Lips and Dog Tale are not only hilarious, but they also bring up that ever pinning question: “If animals could talk…..” I think its within our human nature to wonder what animals are thinking and what animals are communicating to each other through their barks, meows, moos, and so on. The execution with sound was absolutely “A”-mazing!

  7. communcation is widely misunderstood within even the human race, translation of word from one language to another could bring about multiple meanings. i liked watching these videos and hearing the different interpretations of animal language.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s