Kerry Tribe | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Kerry Tribe 

Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe

Subterfuge and suspicion are intertwined in Kerry Tribe's black-and-white film installation Untitled (Potential Terrorist), a response to the post-9/11 profiling of possible terrorists. The silent 16-millimeter film runs continuously in a spare white room, showing a series of one-minute screen tests by 29 Californians who posed as terrorists. They'd answered an ad Tribe ran in December 2001 seeking actors for "an untitled silent 16mm experimental film for UCLA." The only requirement: "Must look like a terrorist." Tribe, who modeled her project on screen tests done by Andy Warhol, did no background checks on and makes no claims about the lineup of 28 men and one woman who stare into the camera--some impassively, others ominously. She says one ruggedly handsome man identified himself as a former U.S. Navy SEAL. The film is disconcertingly ambiguous. It's disarming because we assume these people are just regular folks--one guy keeps breaking into a grin, and a bearded man wears a baseball cap that says Alaska, Keep on Hoof'N. But it's unnerving because these individuals are projecting stereotypes of terrorists while inviting us to project ours on them. We're also aware that we can't really tell who they are--which tells us how corrosive the suspicion now circulating in our country is. Bodybuilder and Sportsman Gallery, 119 N. Peoria, through April 26. Hours are 11 to 6 Tuesday through Saturday; 312-492-7261.

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Reader Revolutionary $35/month →  
  Rabble Rouser $25/month →  
  Reader Radical $15/month →  
  Reader Rebel  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  → 


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Agenda Teaser

Performing Arts
November 12
Galleries & Museums
Anthem Weinberg/Newton Gallery
September 11

Popular Stories