----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
 Thanks to Dale for the invitation. My contribution is a bit wide-ranging,
since I’d like to take the opportunity to explore a new project as well, my
first major work since ‘Promenade,’ included in Invisible Geographies.

In this new project, ‘Slow Return,’ I use my own original footage as well
as satellite and webcam imagery to depict and connect the source of the
Rhone River in the Swiss Alps and its estuary in southern France. The Rhone
Glacier’s situation is particularly urgent as it’s in an advanced stage of
melting and will likely have completely disappeared by the end of the
current century. At its other extremity, the Rhone flows past southern
Europe’s largest petrochemical port, a major source of pollution, on its
way out to the Mediterranean Sea.

One of the challenges that I face in this project is creating connections
or cause/effect links beyond the natural resource that links these two
regions, which is where the alternative footage comes in, allowing me to
make such links evident through the human-made surveillance technologies
that are in many ways products of the same industrial production and
environmental control that led to the Rhone Glacier’s current condition.
But when I tend towards these macro perspectives, I’m aware of neglecting
the specificity of each location. This has led me reflect how I faced a
similar conundrum in ‘Promenade.’

In 'Promenade,' I attempted to reconcile the two by a taking a more
formalistic, distant approach from my subjects, which I blended with
repetition and duration in a narrative sense to emphasize the simultaneous
structural and experiential aspects of changing modes of use in a
redeveloped public space. In following the conversation so far this month,
I’ve seen similar questions posed by others with regard to projects they’ve
either made or viewed.  So, I’d ask: how does the imperative of
‘documentary’ structure our negotiations (whether as documentarians,
filmmakers, artists, critics, theorists) of questions of specificity v.
larger mechanisms/themes/connections? Is something lost when we hew too
closely to one or the other?

On Mon, Apr 16, 2018 at 11:15 AM, Dale Hudson <dmh2...@nyu.edu> wrote:

> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
> Thanks, Garrett, Fédérique, Dorit, Luke, and Toby, for participating in
> last week’s discussion, which I hope will continue and intersect with this
> week’s discussion.
>
> This week’s guests include  Steve WetzeL (US), Mariana and Daniel O’Reilly
> (UK), Max Schleser (AU), Philip Cartelli (US/FR), Adam Fish (UK), and
> Rachel Johnson (US)  .
>
> All have participated in the “Invisible Geographies” exhibition for the
> twentieth edition of FLEFF.
>
> Steve Wetzel’s _Aquarius the Waterman_ makes visible the geographies that
> humans negotiate through economic shifts in commodity markets for iron-ore
> within the environmental devastation of the Erzberg open-pit mine in
> Austria.
>
> With _NEO-LONDON_, The Unstitute (Marianna and Daniel O’Reilly) speculates
> on a possible future in which the city of London in the United Kingdom has
> collapsed. The project allows users to navigate an archive that maps
> according to psychological coordinates rather than physical ones, in order
> to locate causes for an increasingly probable future.
>
> Max Schleser’s _Viewfinders_ (with Gerda Cammaer and Phillip Rubery) is a
> platform that offers users the opportunity to compare their own views of
> the world with those of others by uploading a short tracking shot to a
> database where it will be edited together with tracking shots by others.
>
> In Philip Cartelli details in _Promenade_, the Mediterranean port of
> Marseille is being transformed from a racially/ethnically, religiously, and
> nationally diverse center of trade into a whitewashed tourist attraction.
> Nonetheless, traces of the past emerge.
>
> Adam Fish's _Points of Presence_ (with Bradley Garrett and Oliver Case)
> documents the invisible geographies of submarine and subterranean internet
> cables and the human labor that makes wireless function.
>
> In _Escaped Exotics Vol. 1_ Rachel Johnson investigates the Jequirity
> (Rosary Pea) as more than a mere invasive species from South Asia to south
> Florida in the United States. The plant’s poisonous seeds have been
> appropriated into the cultures of tropical areas around the globe.
>
> I look forward to hearing more about these projects from their makers, as
> well as their conceptions of an arts practice that moves between
> conventional categories, including documentary.
>
> Best,
> Dale
>
> Bios:
>
> Steve WetzeL (US) is an artist, video maker, and assistant professor in
> the film department at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Over the past
> decade, Wetzel has produced many works of experimental non-fiction and
> anthromentary (a form that combines anthropology and documentary) video,
> which have been exhibited nationally and internationally. His arts practice
> emerges within the intersection of experimental film/video, observational
> documentary, and social constructions of reality. These themes can also be
> found in two small volumes of writings, _Occasional Performances and
> Wayward Writings_ (2010), and _[PAUSE]_ (2014), described as “an urgent and
> generous exegesis” and “a contemporary mix of aesthetic, personal, and
> moral imminence.”
>
> The Unstitute (UK) is Marianna and Daniel O’Reilly. Built in 2010 to
> challenge establishment values and explore the domain of art in the
> twenty-first century, The Unstitute not only presents projects produced
> in-house, but hosts virtual residencies, virtual curated exhibitions and
> monthly online screenings. The architecture of the website itself is a
> prime feature of the project, incorporating labyrinths amid derelict online
> spaces.
>
> Max Schleser is a filmmaker, who explores smartphones and mobile media for
> creative transformation and media production. His portfolio (
> http://www.schleser.nz/) includes various mobile, smartphone and pocket
> camera films, which have been screened at festivals, galleries, and museums
> internationally. He publishes on mobile and smartphone filmmaking, creative
> innovation, and collaborative filmmaking. He is also cofounder of the
> Mobile Innovation Network Australasia (MINA) and curates the annual
> International Mobile Innovation Screening.
>
> Philip Cartelli (US/FR) has made films and video works exhibited at the
> Locarno Festival (CH), the Edinburgh International Film Festival (UK),
> FID-Marseille (FR,) and the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s non-fiction
> showcase Art of the Real (US), among others. He holds a Ph.D. in Media
> Anthropology with a secondary emphasis in Critical Media Practice from
> Harvard University, where he was a member of the Sensory Ethnography Lab.
> He also holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the Ecole des hautes études en
> sciences sociales. He currently teaches filmmaking at Wagner College in New
> York City, where he is also co-director of the Film and Media Studies
> program.
>
> Adam Fish (UK) is cultural anthropologist, video producer, and senior
> lecturer in the Sociology Department at Lancaster University. He employs
> ethnographic and creative methods to investigate how media technology and
> political power interconnect. Using theories from political economy and new
> materialism, he examines digital industries and digital activists. His book
> Technoliberalism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017) describes his ethnographic
> research on the politics of internet video in Hollywood and Silicon Valley.
> His co-authored book After the Internet (Polity, 2017) reimagines the
> internet from the perspective of grassroots activists and citizens on the
> margins of political and economic power. He is currently working on a book
> about hacktivist prosecution called Hacker States and a book and
> experimental video called System Earth Cable about “elemental media” —
> atmospheric and undersea information infrastructures in the United Kingdom,
> Denmark, Iceland, and Indonesia.
>
> Rachel Johnson (US) is a North American artist working regionally along
> the East Coast. Her media-specific videos and performances unveil the
> temporal nature of the human within the frameworks of biological desire
> that guide the evolution of our virtual/material landscapes and poetics.
> She traces her own origins to the humid subtropics of North Carolina and
> has no reaction to poison ivy, pollen, or mosquito bites.
>
>
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