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Peter Kalisch's 'Empty Mirror' Shows Queer Noise, Sex, and Narcissism

Peter Kalisch

Musician and performance artist Peter Kalisch has released an orgiastic new video that is a commentary on "fame-obsessed culture."

The video, "Empty Mirror" (from the solo album of the same name), depicts Kalisch at the center of a bathhouse, which boasts cameos from artists like MRK, Jaake Castro, Byron Scott Adam, and Fausto Renteria.

Codirected by Leila Jarman and produced by Luka Fisher, the production is a "noise project," a genre of music that eschews lyrics and instruments. Celeste XXX provided hair and makeup. 

"Empty Mirror" screened at the Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival last Sunday at MOCA Grand prior to Steven Arnold: Heavenly Bodies. The album is available to purchase through Obsolete Units.

Kalisch issued the following statement to The Advocate:

It is my belief that narcissism is an epidemic in our fame-obsessed culture. This song, video, and the album which it comes from act as a personal attack on my own narcissistic behavior, which I began to realize had begun to consume my life as I became a more established artist. Vulnerability is one of the key facets to my work, and I realized I would need to be self-aware and confront my actions and behavior, instead of performing the typical role of an artist who promotes themselves in a completely positive light. We are constantly designing our own realities, through social media, we as artists have gained the power to have control over how people perceive us, and what they see. I wanted to stab this notion in the back through my lyrics and visuals. Working with the metaphor of an "empty mirror," I seek to point to how narcissistic behavior only leads to a lack of substance and value in our lives. This artist role that I had been projecting had only led to a sense of disillusion with my identity. Through Greco-Roman references and various visual metaphors, this video acts as a personal confrontation, exposing my inner fears to the world in order to become a more powerful and authentic individual. 

Watch "Empty Mirror" below.

WARNING: This video contains some graphic imagery.

Tags: Music, Outfest

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