Photographer: Evelyn Thomasson / Kristianstads konsthall. 2015
On screen: Black Of Death by Chim Pom
Still from O Levante (The Uprising) by Jonathas De Andrade
Astrid Noack’s Atelier in Nørrebro, Copenhagen, is our second stop on the summer tour. On May 29th we’ll be screening a short film by artists Søssa Jørgensen and Geir Tore Holm, called Astrid Noack’s Atelier, based on a series of filmed interviews with people involved with the preservation and development of the former backyard studio of artist Astrid Noack.
Still from Astrid Noack’s Atelier by Søssa Jørgensen & Geir Tore Holm, 2015
Søssa Jørgensen and Geir Tore Holm were artists in residence at Astrid Noack´s Atelier in August-September 2014. The recordings for the video documentary were made in the studio in Copenhagen and at the farm of the artists, Ringstad in Østfold, Norway.
Other films this evening:
The Uprising, by Jonathas De Andrade, documents a horse and cart race in Recife, Brazil. Horse-drawn carts are officially prohibited in the city, mainly because of how they clash visually with the notions of order and progress. But horses and carts are still in use among some people in the city, and the law turns a blind eye to them. Jonathas De Andrade got involved with organizing the delirious first race of horse-drawn carts in Recife. By saying the race was staged for the shooting of a film, thus a fiction, it got the necessary permissions. An aboiador improvises a song about what he witnessed during the day of the race, calling it an uprising, in a rural revolutionary essay in the form of a song.
Still from O Levante (The Uprising) by Jonathas De Andrade
Black of Death, by Chim Pom, shows members of the Japanese artist group gathering huge flocks of crows and bringing them to the monuments of Tokyo. Driving around the city on a motorbike, while playing the sound of crows singing through a megaphone and trailing a stuffed crow, they are followed by growing swarms of black birds, an ominous cawing cloud that is the black of death. The 2013 version of the film includes added footage from the deserted evacuation zone around the Fukushima nuclear power plant, and a swarm of crows gathering over the offices of Tepco (Tokyo Electric Power Company).
Illuminated, by Caroline Mårtensson, is a film of the Swedish army practicing target shooting with tracer lights at night. The shooting takes place at Ravlunda shooting range, an area of natural beauty next to the ocean. In the field, there’s plant life, animals and insects struggling to co-exist under the bombardments by the army, which increases in frequency as Sweden rents out the area to foreign armies.
On May 22nd we’ll be screening videos in the very first film studio started in Sweden. The old studio building of Svenska Bio is now the local Museum of Film in Kristianstad. The rooftop terrace was formerly used as an outdoor studio, where cameras could take advantage of the light conditions better than they could indoors. Stage sets depicting indoor environments were built on the rooftop terrace, and indoor scenes were shot outdoors. Sometimes, in old films, you can see tablecloths flapping in the wind, or the breath of the actors forming clouds because of the cold, disturbing the illusion. At the moment we’re looking around for some short clips of these ghostly breaths, in order to add them to the screening.
In this former rooftop studio we’ll be screening a program of videos beginning with Workers Leaving The Factory by the brothers Lumière, allegedly the first film shown in a cinema, a 40 second clip of workers literally exiting the factory gates. From there, we expand upon the title by association. Makwayela was made by Jean Rouch, a visual anthropologist, and Jacques D’Arthuys, a cultural attaché, in Mocambique in 1978. A group of people who used to work in the mines in South Africa have returned to Mocambique after their country won its’ independence from Portugal and formed a new socialist nation. The former miners now work in a bottle factory. Each morning they gather outside the factory to perform a dance together, called the Makwayela, and to sing, before starting the days’ work. The song performed in the film begins with a call to tear down capitalism and imperialism. Then the lyrics switch from portuguese to a secret language called fanakalo. Fanakalo was used in the mines in South Africa, by miners who would communicate without being understood by their overseers. We’ve provided the film with its’ first ever subtitles, with kind assistance from Isabel Löfgren who translated the portuguese into english. The bits in fanakalo have been left untranslated, and the secret language remains secret. A Ruda Roadmovie by Marie Bondeson is an old favorite of ours, and we’ve written about it on this blog before. In short, the film shows Douglas Fransson from the village Ruda as he takes the artist on a tour of the village, pointing out to her all the local businesses and public services that have had to close down as a consequence of the outsourcing of the main company in town, Mateco. The verbal delivery of Douglas Fransson is deadpan and laconic, and the village seems to be all but shut down. Black Of Death by Chim↑Pom shows the Japanese artist group gathering a huge flock of crows in the evacuated contaminated zone near Fukushima, and leading them across the landscape towards the offices of TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company. A stuffed crow dangled from the rear of a motorcycle, and the sound of crows calling played through a megaphone, gradually draws together a growing number of crows, a black cloud of death. Finally, the film Sekvens 1 och 2 i Huaröd 2 is a repeating loop of a film shot by artist and poet Beata Berggren in her former home village Huaröd, just south of Kristianstad. Scenes recorded around the pump at an umanned gasstation, some staged and some documentary, repeat themselves as day turns to night. Fragments of text and sound are added according to an associative logic. Here’s the Filmmuseum in Kristianstad