Channel Swimmer is a short ‘flicker’ film that examines repetitive and ambivalent relationships in matriarchal cycles through the generations from mother to daughter to mother. The film is inspired by two novels – ‘A Proper Marriage’ by Doris Lessing and ‘National Velvet’ by Enid Bagnold, and their main characters. Martha Quest in ‘A Proper Marriage’ is having her own child and questions the relationship between herself and her mother. While Velvet Brown is quietly encouraged by her mother (who is the ‘Channel Swimmer’ of the title – as those who swim the English Channel to France are known) in ‘National Velvet’, the climax of which is when the protagonist wins the famous Grand National steeplechase. The words in the soundtrack are collaged from these two books. The film is made from hundreds of original photographs taken on location on a racecourse and in the studio.
Atticus Review, incidentally, unveiled a spiffy new site design a month or two back, and the editors are always looking for good mixed media submissions. Be sure to bookmark and check the site regularly.
I’m proud to be part of the generation who challenge discriminatory forms of sharing and creating poetry. I’m particularly interested in spaces that augment content and form into novel poetic genres. In my dancepoems, I’ve been experimenting with music, dance and poetry to see if carefully controlled convergence of three arts can give rise to a new poetic experience.
Between 2015 and 2017, I was fortunate to work with three very talented dancers. The theme binding our three dancepoems together is celestial dialogues- conversations between The Sun and The Earth, The Moon and The Sun, and The Earth and The Moon. When thinking about these conversational duets, the search for a ying-yang balance becomes a quest for unity and departure from human-imposed hierarchies.
If the Earth spoke to the Moon, what would she say? And if the Moon talked to the Sun, would they remember the times when they were one? The perennial themes of love and separation somewhat always find their way into a poem…
Psychologist, writer, and animator Ilana Simons describes her conflicted feelings about the seemingly endless creativity of a fellow artist, Noah Saterstrom, in this wonderful, quirky blend of videopoetry and documentary set to an up-tempo track from the Dirty Dozen Brass Band.
This upload was the April 17 release from the Visible Poetry Project (which, incidentally, just had a screening in Beijing last Thursday — the first U.S. poetry film festival to travel abroad in a number of years). Simons’ own upload of the video is accompanied by a note that “this is a short intro to a longer documentary I’m making about Noah Saterstrom, a painter”. She has previously made documentaries about Haruki Murakami and the literary critic William Empson.
A new, author-made videopoem from Pakistani filmmaker, photographer and literature student Ayesha Raees, who told me last year that she was writing her thesis on videopoetry. The Vimeo description includes a bit about the creative process by way of an acknowledgement:
Special thanks to Sue Rees and Animation projects, my beautiful friends who I photographed unknowingly yet knowingly in the Vermont autumn of 2014 (which was a ghastly time for me), a house which became a home, an existence that unconsciously saved me, and again, to Sue, who gave me a platform to create what I wished to create.
Click through to read the poem.
A soundtrack-driven videopoem by Ian Gibbins. This is one of the just-announced Official Selections for the Juteback Poetry Film Festival 2017, which includes this synopsis:
“Now is the time of night when I wish I could piss like a dog… on this side of the law, I do not really care…” Something about territoriality and the dispossession that ensues. Perhaps our urban future is little more than a dog’s life, running the streets in the grainy afterdark, virtually colourblind, hunkered close to ground, following old scent trails, barely aware of the disaster about to befall us…
I admit, I want there to be hell. I want to decide who goes there.
Martha McCollough’s latest videopoem makes a case for everyone’s least favorite afterlife destination. The video appears in Issue Seven of Datableed, one of the relatively few literary magazines that specifically mentions “visual or video poetry” as something they’re looking for.
“The ocean, addiction, making a few collages to discover some kind of meaning…In memory…” Thus reads the description to this moving, personal video essay by artist Dave Richardson, which explores the collage-like nature of memory itself. It was featured at Atticus Review back on May 5, accompanied by an artist’s statement. Here’s a snippet:
For my own personal or collaborative creative work, I am always trying to lose a sense of control, to move beyond the expected visuals and to not overthink the final results, to leave some of the process evident, the rough edges. I agree with the graphic designer Paul Rand when he said, “To design is much more than simply to assemble, to order, or even to edit: it is to add value and meaning, to illuminate, to simplify, to clarify, to modify, to dignify, to dramatize, to persuade, and perhaps even to amuse. To design is to transform prose into poetry.”