Saturday, 3 October 2009
I have now finished the films l wanted to edit for the show in Lagos in March.
The first series of films consist of three looped pieces entitled 'UN-Reality' which plays with ideas of the unexpected and unfamiliar to introduce the viewer to unusual customs such as the little girl lying down on the floor which is a very common way of relaxing in Nigeria. To me she looks as if she is dreaming which takes reality into unreality and then perhaps into the realms of fantasy.
The next loop is of a glasses case swinging around a glass table which again is uncanny and which my hosts found very disturbing and began to think l had powers l had not got!!! - it was of course the ceiling fan but only when it was turned up full blast!!!
The third loop was taken at night in the big house in Owerri which was a bit creepy at night l must admit. This is of an open window taken at night with all the strange noises of the night coming into the space - again being black and white with elements of shadows this time, which reminded me of the Film Noire genre and the horror films we are used to seeing picking up on our own symbolism.
The other two films entitled 'Day' and the other 'Night' were taken in one of the big rooms in the house in Owerri, one at night and one during the day which l called the ancestor rooms in my mind, as they had these huge chairs which made a real presence (and yet absence) within the room and these were all placed in a circle. The daytime film gives an air of calm and recollection, whilst the night-time version brings in all the essence of ritual associated with the Mbari ritual of sacrifice but also an element of contemporary fears such as the police blocks l experienced. Night and Day were very important in the Mbari practices. Within our own culture Epstein uses this theme in his underground sculptures and Michangelo with his Dawn and Dusk, although different in concept. Again the binary oppositions are evident in this work of mine as they have been in my art work to date.