After the vague polaroid-post a few weeks ago, we think it is time to provide you with a bit more information about our latest project.
We started working on our first fiction film, a new experience for all of us. Currently titled “The Song”, the film is inspired by Chris Marker’s La Jetée (The Jetty) from 1962, a beautiful film almost completely comprised of stills with an amazing soundtrack. Our film will work with the same aesthetic and sonic concept, but we are going to combine it with animation and – of course – a unique narrative.
The Song is set in a post-apocalyptic world, in which John Cage’s “ASAP (As Slow As Possible)” has taken on a life of its own. “ASAP” is being performed in a church in Halberstadt, Germany at the moment; having started in 2000 it is going to finish in 2640.
Recently we began to shoot the trailer for The Song. You can look forward to seeing it online soon…
Helpyourself Manchester was screened at the Victoria Baths Fanzine Fair. It was a lovely day with loads of interesting discussions. Thanks to everyone who came!
The Skinny published an article about the Fanzine Fair with an excerpt of an interview with us: http://www.theskinny.co.uk/books/features/304578-better_paper_victoria_baths_fanzine_fair
The Shrieking Violet posted a nice article about Castles Built in Sand. It discusses Helpyourself Manchester in the light of the upcoming screening at Victoria Baths, as part of the Fanzine Fair on the 5th of May. Have a look here.
The last film in our series is Glass Parade by Insa Langhorst, a 14-minute video about Taybeh, the only brewery in Palestine, with a soundtrack by the Levenshulme Bicycle Orchestra.
Glass Parade is a “spontaneous” piece of work in almost all its aspects. It is a reaction to the environment it is set in and experiments with the impact of sound over visuals. Through the combination of visuals and non-diegetic sound it aims to transcend the literal meaning of the visuals, and allows different denotations to be created.
The video is set in Taybeh, the only brewery in Palestine. Taybeh, named after the Christian Palestinian village it is located in, is a family business, which was established in 1994 after the Oslo Peace agreements. The founders David and Nadim Khoury had lived in the USA until then and returned in the hope that the agreements would enable Palestinians to live and work more freely.
The third film in our series is by Huw Wahl, and examines the use of photography in the Israel/Palestine conflict, it’s called Negotiating Representation in Israel and Palestine:
The Israel-Palestine conflict is one of the most infamous in the world, continually visited by foreign journalists wishing to gain a new angle on the situation there. But what of the photographers living and working in the region; how do they negotiate the issues of victimhood, narrative, representation and the problematic nature of image-making in an area that supplies the world with thousands of photographs and videos every day?
Over the coming 4 weeks, Castles Built in Sand will present a series of short experimental films that seek to explore the relationship between sound, music, video and photography. These films vary in length (from 2 to 20 mins) and cover a range of subject matters from the use of music to examine and define space, place and the journey, to issues around the image and representation in photography. It is our hope that these short films will provoke the viewer to think about the various uses of sound in film, about how the use of music in film affects how we perceive the images presented to us, and how, in terms of representation, the image can become a loaded and problematic construction. Each film will be accompanied by a short text outlining the central concerns of the filmmaker. Up first is Dark Water by Katy and Simon Connor.
Film By Katy Connor
Music by Simon Connor
Dark Water is an audio visual collaboration between myself as a composer and my sister Katy Connor, film maker and video artist . The film was first screened at Dartington College of Arts in 2008 as a video installation, and its original form included no sound. Whilst completing my MA in Composition I asked Katy if I could compose a soundtrack for the piece. I had always been fascinated by its mesmeric quality and saw a real opportunity to explore some of the ideas introduced in the film in terms of the audio accompaniment.