Bookended by astral compositions, the Earth, Wind & Fire programme explores the elemental as informed by myths, legends, dreams, and cosmic forces.
Dir. Kevin Jerome Everson
Veteran filmmaker (and amateur meteorologist) Kevin Jerome Everson uses 16mm film and unconventional lenses to render a natural phenomenon in a cosmic manner. This silent short film places us in around in the midst of a solar eclipse. The reds in the sky along with the bokeh effect create a calming mood.
We witness the alignment of Earth, moon and sun in the same plane as the moon passes between the Earth and the sun, partially covering the sun. Made in memory of Emerson’s grandmother, who passed away near the time of a solar eclipse, the film is a lovely homage to her life. The eclipse itself serves as a meditation of life.
Dir. Sky Hopinka
Hopinka’s film tells of Ho-Chunk traditions of revival and a myth inspired by the Xąwįska, or the Indian Pipe Plant. The Ho-Chunk time use this root used to revive people who have fainted. Posed as a sort of correspondence between beings, the film blends colourful imagery, music, and scrolling text into a sort of meditation of myth and memory.
Through captivating images, we learn about this imagined myth. The scrolling text, and narration speak of time of youth, learning, arrivals, departures, and ascendance. The music mixes original music by Native-American artists Arlene Nofchissey Williams & Carnes Burson; as well as, music by Ramiro Ramiro Ramirez, and by Hoping himself. Cinematically, musically, and culturally, the film is a wonderful journey.
Prologue to the Tarot: Glenna
Dirs. Brittany Gravely, Ken Linehan
Described by the filmmakers as a “cinematic tarot card”, this twice-exposed film is a portrait of the main character Glenna.
Visually enchanting with its vivid colour palette with equally charming music. The feel of the film is airy almost. Lacking in depth in this writer’s opinion. Nonetheless, pleasant and interesting to watch.
ante mis ojos
Dir. Lina Rodriguez
Shot on grainy, amber-like Super 8, Rodriguez takes us to Colombia’s Lake Guatavita, widely thought to be the basis for the legend of El Dorado.
Rodriguez’s camera work and sound work by Camilo Martínez evoke the mythical aspects of Guatavita. We hear the sounds of exotic birds and the lake welcoming us into this sacred space. It feels like a journey through time and space. The film can also be interpreted as a ‘thank you’ and acknowledgment to the Sesquilé community for being the lake’s guardians.
Dir. Malena Szlam
Szlam employs superimpositions and other effects to recast the lakes, salt flats, skies, and volcanic deserts of Northern Chile and Northwest Argentina as out-of-this-world landscapes.
These locations always draw artists to create dreamlike, ethereal works. Szlam’s cinematography is sublime here. The way she presents the different phases of the moon are evocative and meditative all at once. The feeling is like that of being in a planetarium… quiet, tranquil, while reminding us how expansive the universe is. The mix of landscape imagery with excellent sound work and editing makes this a sensorial experience… like streams of life.