Gamelan Oneirum

GAMELAN ONEIRUM

Balinese gamelan performances originally took place at night, in the woods beside a village, where the multimedia performance would induce a trance-like state of suspension. Spectators were encouraged to sleep, and allow the gamelan to enter their reverie…

 

 Borrowing from the aesthetics and concepts of these events, Gamelan Oneirum is a night of immersive cinema performances, seeking to transpose this play of light, shadow, space, and exploded time into the realm of the moving image.

A PAGE OF MADNESS BY YVES TUMOR

Kurutta ippêji (A Page of Madness)
Teinosuke Kinugasa, Japan, 1926
DCP, 60’

Enter the cinema of madness, a broken kaleidoscope distorting the screen; a surrealistic phantasmagoria, constantly collapsing on itself… Focusing on a retired sailor who takes a job as a janitor in a mental asylum to provide for his wife who tried to kill their child, this expressionistic film is one of the most stunning examples of early silent cinema, thought to have been lost for over fifty years. A visual tour de force, with incredible art-deco sets and pulsating montages, a truly disturbing, and inspiring, film. SIFF is excited to have a live-score for the film from musician Yves Tumor (profiled in Live from the Tannery).

Yves Tumor is the inspired and conflicted persona of Tennessee-raised producer/ performer Sean Bowie, a conduit for a distinctly bold personal aesthetic that has wrought Serpent Music – his latest, entrancing LP – and a burgeoning reputation for bruising, invigorating live performance. Evolved from a diverse and prolific creative history under an expansive range of covert aliases, plus strong ties with forward-thinkers such as NON and Mykki Blanco, Yves Tumor emerges as Bowie’s most personal and matured incarnation to date.

 

OVER AND OVERR AND OVERRR AND OVERRRR AND OVERRRRR...

Andys Skordis composes and conducts an ensemble of Javanese gamelan, flute, and percussion instruments in an audiovisual symphony which constitutes the score to a selection of short films. Skordis’ performance highlights the materiality of sound; his orchestra of instruments (ranging from traditional to found objects) is specifically tailored to the architecture of the performance space itself. The films respond accordingly, drawing attention to alternative immaterialities in cinema. The selected films employ pre-cinematic technologies (paint, insect wings, dirt, fungus, and other detritus) and post-cinematic technologies (television, glitching software) that provide hallucinations of a new cinema, where the medium is truly is the message.

PROTO-CINEMA

Impresiones en la alta atmósfera
(Impressions from the Upper Atmosphere)
José Antonio Sistiaga, Spain, 1989
Video, 7’

 

Mothlight
Stan Brakhage, USA, 1963
16mm, 4’

 

Going Somewhere:
Episode I (APOCALYPSE) & Episode X (JOURNEY)
Michael Betancourt, USA, 2016
DCP, 13’

POST-CINEMA

Masaje (Massage)
Iván Zulueta, Spain, 1972
Video, 3’

 

RUMPELSTILZCHEN
Jürgen Reble, Germany, 1989
16mm, 15’

Andys Skordis was born in Nicosia, Cyprus in 1983. He left Cyprus at the age of twenty and has been living abroad ever since. He studied Composition and Film Scoring at Berklee College of Music, and later composition at the Conservatorium Van Amsterdam. Additionally, he studied Karnatic music with Dr. Rafael Reina and Balinese Gamelan at ISI Denpasar in Bali.

As a composer he finds inspiration in the primordial human nature, which is reflected through a contemporary methodology in his compositions. His recent works find stimulation from ceremonial and mystical rituals from the world and from his personal experiences. These incentives are expressed as a representation of a contemporary ritual characterized by tension and mysticism in his music. He considers music as a time sculpture, which adopts form and meaning in the context it is performed; constantly changing and always evolving into something unknown.

 

Participating students from the Contemporary Music School (CMS), Syros: Τατιανα Κασιματη, Σταματης Ξανθακης, Κωσταντινος Ρουμελης, Αντωνης Χατζηδακης, Μαρινος Ρουσσος, Ορεστης Jacquot Βαρελας

SHADOW DANCE

Like a shadow-theater run wild, a projector careening out of control, relentless experimenter Xavier Quérel creates a play of shadows in a performance that turns light itself into the actor. With the collaboration of dancer Stamatis Benetas and the open space of the quarry, Quérel uses simple light to carry the moving image off the screen, casting the whole surrounding as a destination for his proto-cinematic projections. As if prolonging the Wayang tradition, our own oneiric puppetry, this distilled collision of light, body, and space forces us to reconsider not only the origin of cinema – the beam that produces the moving image – but also where that image lives, and if it’s defined by light, or perhaps by dark. The body dances in the glow, and its shadow exhilarates beyond.

Xavier Quérel was born in 1966 and lives in Grenoble. Since moving to that town in 1988/90, he has been active in several fields of experimental cinema, chiefly improvising using film projection (16mm, super 8) and light, and staging film/music performances with the “Cellule d’Intervention Métamkine,” which has performed throughout Europe, North America, and Japan. He has also been involved in the group “MAKI – Spectacle of Shadows”, with which he travels regularly to Mali and Senegal, and has many different solo performances. He founded the “Atélier MTK,” an artisanal film laboratory, and also actively participates in the operation of a self-run cooperative, “Le 102,” which organizes projections of experimental film, performances, concerts, and more.

Stamatis Benetas was born in Athens in 1985. He is a dancer and choreographer, and participant in the 2017 Akropoditi dance festival, concurrently taking place on Syros.

LET THERE BE DARK: DANCING SHADOWS

Gamelan Oneirum is about the harmony between moving shadows on a surface and the dreamscape. Projecting in-between performances, these interstitial films will project all around the quarry, throwing the spectator beyond waking. Whenever a performance ends, a selection from this series will serve as both
a refresher, and draw us further in towards the spirit of the night.

A reactive soundscape during the screening of select films will be provided by Jonah Raduns-Silverstein. Raduns-Silverstein is a musician, producer and sound engineer based in Detroit, MI. His compositions employ visual and historical frameworks resulting from his studies in photography and experience as an archivist; circular looping repetition meets linear motorik progress, finding harmony in form.

Annabelle Dances and Dances
American Mutoscope and Biograph, USA, 1900
Video, 5’

 

The Ghost Train / Early Superimpositions
American Mutoscope and Biograph, USA, 1900
Video, 2’

 

De vita händerna (The White Hands)
Rut Hillarp, Sweden, 1950
16mm, 13’

 

Studie II: Hallucinationer (Study II: Hallucinations)
Peter Weiss, Sweden, 1952
16mm, 5’

 

Studie IV: Frigörelse (Study IV: Liberation)
Peter Weiss, Sweden, 1954
16mm, 9’

Studie V: Växelspel (Study V: Interplay)
Peter Weiss, Sweden, 1955
16mm, 9’

 

The Very Eye of Night
Maya Deren, USA, 1958
16mm, 15’

 

Thanatopsis
Ed Emshwiller, USA, 1962
16mm, 6’

 

Pas de deux
Norman Maclaren, Canada, 1968
16mm, 13’

 

Film Stenopeico (Man Without a Movie Camera)
Paolo Gioli, Italy, 1973
16mm, 13’

Topic I et II
Pascal Baes, France, 1989
16mm, 12’

 

Plongeon (Dive)
Dominique Willoughby, France, 2005
Video, 5’

 

Månen (The Moon)
Anna-Lena Jaktlund, Sweden, 2008
Video, 3’

 

Old Happy Days!
Daniel Westlund, Sweden, 2016
Video, 3’

GODS OF BALI WITH MIKE COOPER

Gods of Bali
Nikola Drakulic, USA/Netherlands/Indonesia, 1952
DCP, 55’

Gods of Bali documents the practices and beliefs that found the Balinese existence. Carefully attenuated to the details of the rituals it captures – which range from musical performances, to trances, to the staging of myths – the film depicts a society in which the gap between heaven and earth isn’t nearly as wide as it is in the West. Here, the religious and ritualistic aspects of life are as irreducibly a part of existence as food, geography, and language. The production was supervised by renowned documentarian Robert Snyder.

Mike Cooper has been for the past 40 years an international musical explorer, performing and recording, solo and in a number of inspired groupings and a variety of genres. Initially a folk-blues guitarist and singer-songwriter, his work has diversified to include improvised and electronic music, live music for silent films, radio art, and sound installations. He is also a music journalist, writing features for magazines, particularly on pacific music and musicians, a visual artist, film and video maker, collector of Hawaiian shirts and appears on more than 60 records to date.

Mneme 3 + Nadir

Mneme 3
Performance for two projectors:
hand-painted 16mm film & 35mm slides, 2016, 12’

“In Greek mythology, Mneme is one of the three muses. She is memory personified. Her two sisters are Aoide, muse of song and music, and Melete, muse of study. When I finished making this work and showed it to Panagiotis, he said it made him think of the way our memory works. The work is made out of pre-existing materials that I cut, painted, and collaged together, making something entirely new. So, after reflecting a bit, I agreed with him that, yes, this is in fact analogous to the way our memory functions; Mneme puts together bits and pieces from the past and forms new meaning in the present.”
— Raha Raissnia

Nadir
Performance for one prepared 35mm projector:
painted 35mm film, 2016, 20’

“This piece consists of a long strip of 35mm hand painted collage film that I hand feed and manipulate through an old 35mm slide projector. The imagery is derived from a series of still photographs I have recently taken in my studio. The basic structural elements: light, lens, film and screen are all here directly manipulated by hand. It is a reductive piece that is visceral and tactile, expressing an emotional response to the human condition.”
— Raha Raissnia

Raha Raissnia (b.1968, Tehran, Iran) creates complex works which combine painting, film and drawing. Much of her work is focused on exploring the intersection of these different mediums and how each informs the other in terms of their materiality and their respective processes of making. Raissnia lives and works in Brooklyn and is represented by Miguel Abreu Gallery in New York.

Panagiotis Mavridis (b. 1980, Athens, Greece) works with sculpture, painting, drawing and sound. In recent years he has been involved in designing and making musical instruments that combine electronic and acoustic principles.

GAMELAN ONEIRUM

WEDNESDAY, JULY 19, AT THE QUARRY

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