Second Nature emerges from Aesop's fable The Fox and the Crow, a video in three parts that blurs the boundaries between ' fact and fiction. One part shot as a documentary about specialist animal trainers training a fox and a crow to re-enact the fable, but develops into a re-telling of the fable itself by the animals, interjected with a re-enactment of Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot by the animal trainers. Dialogue between human and animal is crucial; exploring subtle modifications in behaviour through the interaction between the two, where one can never truly control the other. Ben-Ner reveals the function of fables - the use of animals to tell human stories and instruct our own moral behaviour - and mimics their strategies to manipulate the animal trainers as the fable unfolds. The action is the same, repeated again and again, documentary and fiction mirror each other, the fiction becomes reality, with blurred parameters, scrutinising the indistinct power relationships between trainer and trained.
Guy Ben-Ner born in 1969 in Israel is a video artist whose work represented Israel in 2005 Venice Biennale. He participated in Munster Sculpture Project in 2007. He is currently having a mid-career survey exhibition at MassMOCA and will premiere a new work at Performa Biennial in New York in November.