Monday, May 17, 2010


eric fournier, the man supposedly behind one of my favorite things in the universe SHAYE SAINT JOHN has apparently died of gastrointestinal bleeding.  :(
Shaye's videos were what sparked my interest in internet culture and performance through youtube back when i was in art school.  These videos gave me a hope that my art would soon find a place in this world and that video was the way i was supposed to communicate.  I am deeply upset that there will be no more videos from shaye/eric and i know shaye is on the internet in the afterlife i just need to find a chatroom to communicate with har. 

Shaye Saint John is the fictional star of a series of "triggers," short films directed and co-written by Eric Fournier. Saint John may or may not be Fournier, either a character (such as Tyler Perry's cross-dressing Madea) or a persona (such as a drag queen).

Triggers feature rapid camera cuts, morphed sound, negative exposure, and crude special effects. Shaye is typically the only human on-screen (and also the only character with audible dialog), though an array of secondary characters portrayed by burnt plastic dolls make frequent appearances. Throughout the triggers, Shaye bestows history, personality, and speech on these recurring doll characters, thus turning them into recognizable members of the Shaye Saint John cast. Dolls include Kiki, Kirsten, Hagatha, and others.

Shaye's purported background is that of a model and actress, and she still reveals aspirations and commitments to doing both, despite a supposed accident that left her quadriplegic and disfigured by burns. Shaye has four prosthetic limbs and utilizes a wheelchair, though her mobility and ability seem only minorly affected. For example, she can still walk, dance, and operate a telephone and a cash register. She seems not to be aware of her disfigurement, referring to her legs as though they were made of flesh, suntanning, and only making rare references to her accident on-screen. She wears a white mask that conceals her face upward from the upper lip, and she sports various wigs. Her chin is sometimes covered in duct tape. For clothing, she generally wears loose linen dresses that conceal the body beneath.

She writes on her webpage, "I am an entertainer, I am a model, I am a singer, I am a magician, I am an actor. I am so many things! I am also the worlds record holder for having the most problems!"

Her webpage, which communicates a love for outsiders and strange art, claims that she lives on a compound for physically challenged people, and that the "triggers" are documentary-style snapshots of her real life there, recorded by her therapist Fournier. Some of these triggers, however, are scripted with rising action, plot developments, and suspense.

No commentary or insight about Shaye Saint John has ever been presented to the public by her creators. She can be seen as a satire of models such as Paris Hilton. Her triggers lampoon the conventions of beauty, anorexia, consumer culture, and so forth.

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