Pills &  Pearls
an archaeology of a placebogenic obsession ~ Adrien Sina 2002-03
The word placebo ("I will please" in Latin) entered the English language by way of a peculiar mistranslation of the 116th Psalm that read, "I will please the Lord" rather than "I will walk before the Lord".

In these studies the photographic tension between objects and portraits reveals temporary states of anxiety, stress, depression, sadness or melancholia. Regardless of our moods we all have to "please" someone, the Lord (in the past) or simply the others through our social or intimate relationships. In this process where any failure is forbidden Pills, before any medical effect, have to please us just as the Pearls and all the favorite items of our environments are expected to do.

This archaeology of contemporary placebogenic factors explores the role of real pills, sugar pills and placebos through their association with reassuring objects of our daily life underlining their fetishistic and obsessional value. Perfumes, jewels and other hygienic items are functionally equivalent to antidepressant medications. They participate in the placebo effect, improving mood like drugs do, developing a visual and colorful placebogenic semiotics.

© Adrien Sina