BLÅTIME SOL, 2020, 5:50 minutes, single channel video for projection. Film, performance, edit by Rachel Wolfe. Original soundtrack by Mehmet Dogu. Sun video, clay sculpture, and text by Mudi Hachim. This film was made possible by the support of AiR Kjerringøy and Bodø Kommune.
The Sun’s Traveling
As a dream, the screen technology transmits the sun. The process of solar transmission touches the memory of the first moment we see sun in our life. This sun remains within each one of us. The warm light resides within us forever.This traveling project with the sun, transfers the sun through a spiritual ritual derived from Sumerian civilisation. The heat of the sun of Iraq to the cold air of the North, reminds each of us, we move everywhere with this sun inside, and shine this sun from within. The project consists of transmitting light through a video made under the sun of Iraq. By enacting rituals established 8,000 years ago, good energy from the sun is transmuted through the video. The light is refracted from a container, made from paint and clay.The container used in this work contains writing from texts originating from The Epic of Gilgamesh (the sun within you). The texts and container return the memory to the sun within; even in darkness, this warmth remains. The four sections drawn represent stages of the idea, or revelation, of this project from idea to certain, to implementation.In the result, the performance through dance (expressive movements) create forms to represent the process of transmitting light.
During the months of October and November 2020, my work and research continues by the gracious support of AiR Kjerringøy. There I will stay in Kerringøy, in the Arctic Circle near Bodø, Norway. To support my work, please follow the link within this website below. Patrons receive a password to special content only shared with those supporting the continuation of my work.
To describe the Trélex Residency as unlike any artist residency feels like pointing out how deliciously warm the sun is after a long winter. But that’s exactly what it was like to spend a month in the countryside of the Swiss, French borderland.
Because I grew up in a woodland area in a farm town I tend to gravitate towards finding peace and focus working in natural surroundings. Instead of getting saddled with social guilt of going around town, I witnessed smiling faces riding horses on my morning and evening walks. While mostly peaceful, I did have an exciting blind encounter with what sounded like two foxes within my first week. Unbeknownst to me, Switzerland has plenty of foxes!
I had promised myself to journal everyday while on the residency, but what ended up happening was more productivity than I knew I was capable of. After a couple of days of introductions, I got the nudge to just put the paint to the paper, and so I was remembering how to mix colours and draw images with a brush-something I hadn’t done for almost two-decades. As I settled in the lovely surroundings, rekindled my fire building skills, I witnessed a change in my sense of doubt and security. Doubt is really important to me in my work, and sometimes I ebb and flow between venturing out to the edges of my ideas and swirl back to the practical need to attend to subjects I have committed myself to working with-namely beauty.
On the residency it occurred to me the way I talk about my work makes it difficult to understand-but that the encounter of the work itself is considered poetic. Hearing someone else talk about my work has always been deeply valuable, and an experience I really cherish. There is a special kind of magic in gingerly sharing an idea, to have it understood as a worthwhile endeavour. There’s a modern myth of self-confidence I wrestle with, and so I had experienced a real difference in the reciprocity of attention, listening, and compassionate critique. The input from fellow residents was generative, and thoughtful. We commiserated on various experiences with academia, work, migrant living, finding ourselves every few days gathered for dinner, ridiculous hours of giggles, and hugs.
The attitude of inclusivity, the sincerity, the lack of pretence or judgement tends to be rare in the world and so the residency became a place to fully embrace life and time without performance pressures.
I am only saddened I did not stay an additional week, to overlap with the incoming artists. The serendipitous nature of this residency, the timing in my life, is something I don’t think I want to even try to figure out. Serendipity, like Déjà vu, a thematic element in my life and work as a creative maker, on a voyage of discovering some new understanding or connection I have yet to find out. As I venture out from the Angelot womb into the world as a less doubtful artist, I am fulfilled by a renewed sense of trust in the explorations I had the freedom and support to pursue during my time at the Trélex residency.
I made a couple rolls of film while on the residency; I’ll look forward to developing and scanning those to share with you in a future post. In the meantime, I hope you will enjoy seeing my work with gauche on black portfolio and sumi papers, the rock and yarn sculptures, and pictures of my work and thinking spaces-with the beloved cat, Ghandi. You can enjoy some of the Walk Talks and song I made for Ghandi on Soundcloud. The photography projects I worked on will go live to my website soon. The Haiku project I started in 2015 is finally getting digitally archived and ready for exhibition proposals, and some of the paintings I made helped me to understand the material in the books by David Bachelor, I read while on the residency. Developments to www.yotostudio.com were made, as well as www.troplaine.com and first layers of www.artgarde.org were put into place. Having created new muscle memories for stronger cognition, I am forever grateful for this experience for clearer cognition and beautiful humane relationships, and I cannot wait to come back!
This week marks the completion of my first artistic residency after graduate school. As an overview, I have planned to write a post about each specific site during the residency to perform as both an archive, diary, and site for future reference. There were quite a plenty experience with the residents and participated individually I would like to cover. Some of the images at the end of this entry offer hints about the writing to come.
The month-long residency with PRAKSIS Oslo, in Oslo Norway, involved balancing working (for wages) and the deeply laborious effort of artistic practice. As a group, we visited several sites to encounter specific bodily experiences such as an anechoic chamber in Moss, Norway. The delightfully accommodating SEAS had our group to experience their chamber. At once I felt myself atop a snowy mountain and deep within a sort of Platonic cave without any shadows. Several of the artists experienced the sensory deprivation experience where I had been working at Bare Flyt in the Sagene area of Oslo. We visited the Vigeland Mausoleum with an echoic resonance making of the voice, a sense of a holy experience. Most days of the week, several of the artists would gather at NOTAM, and we would discuss our individual projects and where they intersect. We met with Stephanie von Spreter, the director of Fotogalleriet, as she graciously joined our meetings to review our work. The organisers of PRAKSIS, Nicholas Jones and Charlotte Teyler, hosted several delightful dinners in which members from art, educational and political actions in Oslo joined us for some memories I feel honoured to raise a glass towards.
The sort of things we discussed were plenty, but some themes that contininually surfaced:
synchonicities, esp, perception, embodied sensations, the real, imagined, virtuality, personal biography, the other, whether or not free will or choice really exists and the implications, what constitutes collaboration and through careful consideration by the lead artist of the residency, Lindsay Seers, we landed upon corroboration.
This residency offered a stark contrast to many of the institutional experience I encountered during graduate school. I was surprised and encouraged by the supreme openness, warmth, curiosity, and supportive nature of this group of genuine artists. Quite often, I will find closures or endings terribly tragic, that all promises to remain in contact result to be words in vain. This time there really was not a sense of goodbye, but the real sense of vi ses, or we see, next time.
And so I am reminded of a poem I wrote in Chicago and performed at the Green Mill many years ago. At this juncture of writing and saying aloud these words, I was in a a cognitive space where I found the division between work and leisure to be a construct of value only to the markets which asked me to pay my wage to their products or objects. I sought a life where there would be no division of work and leisure. That even this word leisure seemed in 2007 (or was it 2006, or 2008?) an ideal about an attitude. What if the ridged way of marking time with days, hours, activities could be dissolved? Of course these kind of descriptors of time remain in play today, and quite often I may appear as a totally absent minded person, but more importantly, this seeking I had set out for became fully realized throughout the duration of the residency. I brought with me to the residency a vague notion we may create a work together or share an accumulation of many small works together one day (as Lindsay has already been creating several videos for each of the residents), and gained something more immediately of value-the dissolving of concepts, beliefs, allusions. A more cohesive experience of living and creating. Yes, I experience this quite as sensationally as it may sound. To be a more complete and whole practitioner of embodied reality, not forced or coerced by preset standards. And again, as in science, quite often the proof has been created by whatever set our minds towards. Here is the poem, at last:
sit atop a twiddle my thumbs tuesday
aching for the ever acclaimed weekend
i bide my time with silly banter until
we can be near
i’m singin’ a tune you had better listen to
but no good at games
i’m claiming innocence and honesty
will someday gather me a man
who can handle my moves
not try to tame my heart
but hold my hand
no room for tears
for we never say goodbye
only see you next time