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HUNGER FOR PICTURES
Is this a 'good' image?
Does it lead us somewhere?
Does it "go on", or "go before" us?
Is it with, or 'without expression'?
Where does a hunger for images that we cannot read leave us? We struggle with the reading of 'images', with the right conditions for knowledge, with all the gaps and silences of history.
If history "weighs like a nightmare on our lives", how, when attempting to deal with these stories, do we avoid reanimating this specter? If we cannot know the past, can we gage something from its ruins?
Perhaps we start right here by refuting a position of knowing, of definitive's, and instead embrace what Shapiro termed an "active entertainment of things": not a totality, but rather a multiplicity, not attempting to know what has been lost, but at least to feel this loss, to seek the gaps, 'sounding them out', to find their rhythm, their timbre.
What if you can't speak to anyone in your own language? The last Yaghan, Cristina Calderón, speaks to her sister in her dreams- nothing is lost there. What did she say, when she witnessed the last ritual of her people?
We cannot speak for the 'other', so instead shall we put forward an image of the silence?
The voices and histories of colonized and subjugated peoples cannot be simply recovered, nor should the contemporary critic attempt to help them speak through ventriloquism. Rather they must be heard as a kind of "speaking silence".
Mandy Bloomfield (Archaeopetics)
Can we then make bodily what cannot be said? How can language and sound occupy space and provoke 'invisible images' within memory? You told me that images already inhabit us, they are within us, not just 'without' us. We have started here a process of embodying, translating, shifting, and 'ghosting'.
Does film make history visible? We inhabit a filmic space in order to remember and conjure history- cinema both as window and mirror. The film becomes our conversation, our echo chamber. We define and construct components in terms of those of film:
| script |
| score |
| sound |
| props |
| players |
We adopt collaborative strategies to sift-through, re-read and test the initial materials and references of Magellania, breaking them down in order to build them up, adding new references and new materials, before stripping back once again. Concealing and revealing, a chain of translations and transactions, though various protocols of delegation and workshop formats, where the visual 'script', as the central structural device, is developed organically, though activity: questioning and processing these materials through a series of tasks.
Can afterimages bridge the past with the present? Is meaning created in the gap between image and sound? Do histories and meaning end with language?
We attempt here to bridge the invincible gap between thought and experience, between here and there. Interrupting word and gesture the 'film' becomes our conversation. We work in series, we work with non-finality, an ongoing, that goes on.
Performing the Techno Imagination
Action II: Hunger for Pictures
Scene I: Sketch for Magellania
This staging has taken as it point of departure Magellania, an expanded film essay by Stockholm based artists Love Enqvist, which explored the lapse between image and language through a complex web of relationships, both present and historical, that all touch upon Isla Navarino at the southern tip of Patagonia. Struggling with the impossibility of accurately reading 'images', ones that are personal, historical, cultural or imagined, this scene has adopted a number of strategies, formal and collaborative, in order to try and surmount this 'gap', to re-animate images, elements, and stories from the past, and explore their status today. Through various protocols of delegation, processes of mediation, translation and abstraction, and through a series of workshops, the initial materials of Magellania are in the process of being re-read, re-configured, and given new form.
This was a story of an attempt to recreate/re-find a memory. A memory of a diving woman.
I'll search for her along the road she took and she will reappear for me if I follow the trackless paths or is it too late?
The screen, imagined or real, is here the place of mediation. The staging of an appearance as disappearance.
My search for this involuntary memory has turned into an investigation and a quest for the 'her'. The ghost in me. The ghost of history.
Love Enqvist, 2016
This scene has been developed by:
Love Enqvist (artist)
Rowan Geddis (curator)
Caroline Byström (choreographer)
Sara Gebran (choreographer)
Lisa Holmqvist (composer)