2011 Mono No Aware: Official Lineup
Mono No Aware is, without a doubt, the most original and unique media festival in the U.S. and perhaps the world. Devoted solely to live film projection performances that are designed solely for a singular presentation, the 5th annual edition will be held Saturday, December 3 at the Causey Contemporary at 92 Wythe Ave. in Brooklyn, NY. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and performances begin promptly at 7:00 p.m.
This year’s Mono No Aware is an international event with most performing media artists coming from the immediate Brooklyn/Queens/Manhattan area, but there are also artists from Canada and Germany, as well as artists from Washington state and New Hampshire who are participating.
Some of the mediums being employed in the performances include 16mm and Super 8mm films, sound loops, electronic music, megaphones, overhead projectors, cell phones and more. Plus, accompanying the projected images and sounds will be live accompaniment, such as sign language interpretation, audience participation, narration, musical instruments and more.
Given the spontaneous nature of this entire event, below you’ll find individual descriptions, including mediums that will be used, for each performance. Out of all the participating artists, the Underground Film Journal is only familiar with experimental animator Jodie Mack who will be presenting “Glitch Envy,” an ode to new media.
However, reading over the performance descriptions below, this sounds like an extremely exciting event. And please visit the official Mono No Aware website for more info.
1. A Northern Portrait
16mm Multi-Projection / Live mixing of optical sound loops
Lindsay McIntyre (Alberta, Canada)
Using nine looping 16mm projectors, Lindsay McIntyre will create a haunting personal meditation on the Arctic. Multiple image layers, high-contrast imagery and careful coloration mark this exploration of the northern landscape and its characters. Four simultaneous optical soundtracks are layered and mixed live along with the images. At once an outsider and one who belongs, she will explores the unique combination of beauty and darkness that can only be found in the Arctic landscape.
“I have always had a very strange connection to the north, both biologically and culturally, at once an outsider and one who belongs. This performance will address that relationship.“L.M.
16mm Projection / Field recordings + Live voice over
Edward Merton Casey (New York, NY)
The story of the beginning of time. Of the world. The story of love. And so: the east village, NY. Today. The world begins.
– Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
– Gensis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.’What would it have looked like if the beginning had stayed queer? If the one had stayed ‘them’? Before the silliness of the rib. Who was this first creature?
‘Genesis’ tells that silent, simple story: the beginning of when they were them.
3. The Proximity of Standing Stones
Super 8mm + 16mm Projections / Live electronic music performance + vocals
Monica Baptista / Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe aka Lichens (New York, NY)
From the testimony of ancient rituals to contemporary power generators, both come together on film in an obsessive repetitive dialogue. The sonic intent of this program is to draw connection through the physicality of sound. To relate in a spontaneous way the vision of Neolithic and contemporary monoliths and the function of power within both.
4. The Colors of Spring
Super 8mm + 35mm Slide Projection / Live sign language translation + Viola performance
Joey Huertas aka Jane Public & Patricia Ordonez & Morgan Nance (New York, NY)
A performance art piece that will involve hand-processed super 8mm film, 35mm slide film photography, live viola performance and an ASL (American Sign Language) story interpreter.
The work THE COLORS OF SPRING will interpret a tragic love story using sign language as a communication between protagonists and audience. The performance incorporates imaginary visual settings created on hand-processed film that studies the mountain cabins of rural New Hampshire and 35mm Kodachrome nature slide photography.
The story will be presented using an American Sign Language interpreter reading from actual prison poetry correspondences written between the two lovers prior to the conclusion of their short-lived relationship. The lovers met online and decided to get together for a romantic weekend in the woods of New Hampshire. Their meeting ending with an arrest.
5. Half the Available Light in a Space
Light / Shadow
Luke Munn (Berlin, Germany)
“…the stillness of the light is the first hypostasis of the mind, undecided on the threshold between the immaterial and the material, the medium used to represent everything that is other, without being that other.“ -Harmut Böhme
In this performative work the film operator actively shadows 50 percent of the light emanating from the projector. In doing so, light is activated not simply as a broadcast or transmission medium, but a solid object with dimensions, properties, and a presence of its own.
16mm Film Multi-Projection / Reel to reel tape player + Violin + Megaphone
Eric Ostrowski (Seattle, Washington)
A film performance in triptych. Three 16mm projectors flicker geometric imagery. A whirling dervish with his fiddle provides a dizzying soundtrack to this cinematic homage to reflector artist Richard Elliot.
“Rectangles, stars, diamonds and waveforms are all symbols that have been used in cultures throughout the ages to describe the basic workings of the cosmos.” Through the eyes of a 25th century archaeoastronomer we engage this reflector wall constructed in early 21st century Seattle. What purpose did these giant beacons serve? Was it to mark the solstices? Was it a signal to distant villages? Obey the Monkey?
7. Glitch Envy
16mm Projection / Audience partcipation + Cell phones + Internet surf boards + Voices
Jodie Mack (White River Junction, New Hampshire)
Junk mail detritus forms a handicraft salute to new media while audience members enact multi-tabbed mentalities by vocalizing computer noises, testing sounds on their cellphones, and riding internet surfboards.
8. Through the Headlights
Color acetate + Liquid gels + Overhead projection / Costumed dance performance + Manipulated cello
Jasa Baka & Julia Thomas & Tyr Jami (Montreal, Canada)
Archetypes of woodland narratives come to life through one body. These morphing hybrids move through the beams of headlights bending mind and sounds of cello.
In the Headlights overlaps vivid colours and textures with the use of two analogue (overhead) projectors. They create a discourse through their negative space and suggest atmospheric settings to bend into altered realities onstage. Hand scratched drawings are puppeted through these environments to interact with a human presence – a dancer costumed in white becomes an extension of the projected surface. A Cellist, veiled in darkness offstage, manipulates sound through effect pedals to embellish the projected layers, making them even more ethereal. Projections and dancer travel with sound in a chopped and chewed up narrative through light, shadow, and dazzling technicolour worlds. In a series of living tableau sculptures, the movements of both the overhead-projected light and the dancer’s body emulate the jumpy flicker of silent film, the anti-gravity pull of rewind, and the stretched moments of slow motion.
The characters interpreted in this performance are based on archetypes found in folk tales. They appear and dissolve through the expressions of one female body, shedding and layering costumes in an ever-changing projected landscape.
9. Under the BQE
Super 8mm Projection / Autoharp + Live percussion
Alex Mallis & Hunter Simpson (Brooklyn, NY)
Shot fast and projected slow, Under the BQE is skateboarding on b&w super 8mm film with a semi-improvised live musical score.
10. Tranquility #2 New York
16mm Double Projection / Field recordings + Sounds + Live mixing
Theodore King & Jordan Stone (Brooklyn, NY)
Tranquility, NY explores and explains the relationship of architecture and landscape through two lenses and thus two perspectives. Each finished piece results in two moving images shown side by side, supplemented by audio tracks mixed live by the creators, Jordan Stone and Theodore Rex King.
11. Still Already There
16mm Film Multi-Projection / Spoken Poetry
Alex Cunningham (Ithaca, NY)
An exploration and experimentation with format that aims to challenge conventional notions of movement in film and photography. What I have done is photographed several still scenes. Rather than photographing them with a still camera, however, I have filmed these scenes at 24 frames per second. One expects movement when viewing motion film, but “Still Already There” denies the viewer that pleasure. The result can be feelings of anticipation, anxiety, perplexity, and even mesmerization that are not relieved.
12. Harvest Moon
Super 8mm Multi-Projection installation / Looping Mechanisms + Double peep hole
Amanda Long, Queens, NY
In a contemporary version of Thomas Edison’s Kinetoscope, the figure of trapeze artist Harvest Moon is separated into three films with red, green and blue (RGB) filters and projected through Super 8mm film projectors. When the RGB films overlap they form a full color image. It will be almost impossible for the three films to be played at the same speed causing the image as it overlaps to become abstracted as it runs slightly out of sync. The way in which we see color and light is revealed in these aberrations. The audience can participate in different ways, by looking through the double peephole or by watching and playing with the additive light mixing mechanism in action.