Shift explores the loss associated with moving from one place to another and the loss associated with an intimate experience of death. "I was born in Scotland in 1964 and moved to Saskatchewan when I was twelve. My father died a year later. These events have become central in structuring the way I perceive and interpret subsequent experiences and situations. This work attempts to move beyond prescriptive definitions into an intensely personal autobiographical space. Death deconstructs. Things fall apart including the sense of a unified self. Ideas of continuity and stability are eroded. Images shot in Scotland, Saskatchewan and Montreal are combined with studio footage, creating an associative narrative about an experience for which ordinary language is inadequate."
"The voice carries the words of a story, a memory, a testimony, an experience to share. For many video makers, it makes it possible to defile the images it carries inside it. Shift (1996-97), by Nikki Forest, has chosen confidences and remembering. How can we bring to mind the memory of a disappearance? How can we express the feeling of loss in the face of the death of a loved one - in this case, one’s father? This short video, which shifts back and forth between two continents, evokes diverse departures, diverse detachments. The video maker suggests more than she tells. Each sentence, each shot, has the effect of an impulse: an organic movement/presence which appears and disappears. Every memory is constantly run through with our experience of the present".
GINGRAS, Nicole. «Faire rouler les mots dans sa bouche», Espaces intérieurs : le corps, la langue, les mots, la peau (Quebec City, Musée du Québec), 1999, p.127.