Selection #8

The World Of Breathing

40 mins

The silent and persistent cosmogenic power of plants traces an axis between earth and sky, creating the conditions for our mode of existence: a breathing sphere in which we're always already immersed. We're involved in a mixture with other beings, our presence inscribed in the intricacies of a life that eludes us.

Sun 25 Oct

18:00 - 18:45 / ACUD STUDIO

Olivier Cheval
Die Urpflanze

2020, France, 16mm, col, sound, 6'

During his trip to Italy, Goethe visited the botanical gardens of the cities where he stayed. He fantasized about discovering the existence of the primitive plant: the mold where all the others, despite their difference in shape, would have formed. During the shooting of a film adapted from this trip (The Dream of Lady Hamilton, 2018, CPH:Dox, Next:Wave Competition), I went twice to the Botanical Garden of Naples. Both times the filmstrip was visited by a ghost. I saw there the ghost of this primitive plant, but also the memory of the very beginning of the photographic recording, these photogenic drawings of plants invented by Henry Fox Talbot.

Emily Drummer
Field Resistance

2019, USA, 16mm, col, sound, 16'

Charging scenes of the present with dystopian speculation, Field Resistance blurs the boundaries between documentary filmmaking and science fiction to investigate overlooked environmental devastation in the overlooked state of Iowa. Footage collected from disparate locations—a university herbarium, karst sinkholes inhabited by primordial flora and fauna, a telecommunication tower job site, a decaying grain silo, among others—interlocks to evoke a narrative of present danger and future disaster, of plant expansion and humanity’s retreat. The film rejects the human individual as the focus of narrative cinema, and, instead, adopts the perspective of a symbiotic “implosive whole” in which human and nonhumans are related in an overlapping, non-total way.

Kathleen Rugh
The City is a Heat Island & Our Forests are on Fire

2019, USA, 16mm, col, sound, 5'

The landscape is changing rapidly in Colorado. Denver’s dense growth has contributed to trapped heat in the urban core. Meanwhile, the state’s mountain regions are suffering from more frequent and devastating wildfires. In 2018, the 416 Fire burned more than 54,000 acres in the San Juan Mountains near Durango.

Matt Shaw
Haukijärvi, February

2020, Finland/USA, 16mm, col, silent, 6'

As weather patterns change, the body responds. Rain melts a brief accumulation of snow and we reassess our expectations of Winter. The effects of climate change become pronounced when a month named for the pearly luster of snow is drenched in freezing rain.

Stefano Canapa
Further radical

2020, France, 35mm, bw, sound, 7'

In A Radical Film, Canapa experimented with thin slices of black radish on unexposed film, a reference to film's roots. Further Radical is the same material taken to its logical extreme on an optical printer. An effective explosion of light goes right through the dark photochemical emulsion.