Nationality: Spain

GoldenBricks by Koniclab (Rosa Sánchez and Alain Baumann)

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An interesting experimental videopoem by Koniclab: Rosa Sánchez (director) and Alain Baumann (sound) of the Barcelona-based Kònic thtr. Here’s the description on Vimeo:

Video Poem. Words are appearing on screen, as thin and fragile looking poles move and change to letter shapes. In contrast, we hear the sound of a synthetic and neutral voice, reading and extract of the manifesto from the Mortgage Victims Platform (Plataforma de Afectados por la Hipoteca) who is a movement in Spain whose members have managed to stop evictions by physically standing in front of doors. Estimations are that since the beginning of the crisis in Spain, over 170.000 evictions have taken place in Spain.
In the background, the comforting sound of a shop and its cash register.

On the Eve of Death (De cara a la muerte) by Ángel Guinda

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Sándor M. Salas with the Seville-based Anandor Producciones made this videopoem using found footage, some footage of the poet, Ángel Guinda, in an acting role, and music by Anacinta Alonso. Subhro Bandopadhyay provided the translation for the English subtitles.

Intangible by Hernán Talavera

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Text, video and sound are all the work of the award-winning Spanish videoartist Hernán Talavera.

The Little Mute Boy by Federico Garcia Lorca

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This is Ink Spilled in Cursive from Company E, “a contemporary repertory dance company and film-making group deeply committed to the finest repertory and artistry, with a focus on the power of art to bring awareness, enjoyment and inspiration to artists and audiences around the world.” The choreographer/performer is Jason Garcia Ignacio, with an original, live score composed by Brenden Schultz. Ink Spilled in Cursive will be performed as part of a show called Next: Spain on November 16-17 in Washington, DC. (I’m guessing that the text of the poem will be projected on or above the stage. It certainly seems integral to the performance.)

A fora (Outside) by Albert Balasch

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Moving Poems’ first piece by a Catalan poet is one of the competition films in the upcoming 6th ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival, nominated in the category “Best Debut.” The collaborative process by which it came into being sounds fascinating—part accident, part ekphrasis:

A fora(Outside), is a text by the poet Albert Balasch. A few years ago, Balasch began a series of collaborations with the painter Tià Zanoguera. It was from this collaboration that the idea of adapting the text to comic form arose. Zanoguera then created a long series of paintings and drawings that gave birth to the project. In the end, the project did not come to fruition, but the filmmaker and editor Marc Capdevila thought about the possibility of animating the pages and paintings that had been produced. And in this way they constructed a short-film combining poetry, painting and 2D animation.

The challenge in doing the project was to bring the paintings to life and create a stimulating rather than a narrative universe. How can a painting be brought to life? How can you give life to an individual line or to that essence of a picture that cannot be reproduced? And how can you go beyond a literal illustration of the text?

Zanoguera and Capdevila took photographs of the painting and worked on them with animation software. Then Balasch reduced the text to a script in search of ellipsis.

The result of all this process is a short-film that aims to maintain the texture of the original paintings, the expressivity of the brush strokes and the vitality of the range of colours.

In short, the result is A fora(Outside), a brief journey.

There’s also a version on Vimeo without the subtitles.

Murder (Two voices at dawn on Riverside Drive) by Federico Garcia Lorca

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Asesinato, directed by Javier Gómez Serrano for elegant mob films, is an adaptation of a poem from Poeta en Nueva York (Poet in New York), which may be read at Google Books in both Spanish and English (translation by Pablo Medina and Mark Statman).

The Wind, One Brilliant Day by Antonio Machado

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Machado is one of my favorite poets, so I was excited to see this from award-winning filmmaker Chel White, and with the recitation by none other than Alec Baldwin. Here’s White’s description from the Vimeo page:

Based on a one-hundred-year-old poem by the Spanish poet Antonio Machado, “Wind” is an allegorical perspective on climate change. In recent years, a number of films have been made on the topic of global climate change, but few have addressed the issue from a poetic perspective.

“Wind” is constructed with the poem as the film’s nucleus, book-ended by montages of astonishing time-lapse sequences by photographer Mark Eifert. In the film, scenes of the earth, weather, and human interaction, both negative and positive, dominate the film’s imagery. The music consists of a lesser known piece by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, with solo piano played by Thomas Lauderdale (of Pink Martini.)

Though written in the early 20th century, the Machado poem is particularly poignant today, bearing an uncanny relevance for climate change and planet stewardship. This film was commissioned by the environmental organization Live Earth, and is narrated by Alec Baldwin. The English translation is by Robert Bly.

(Thanks to Viral Verse for the introduction to Chel White’s work.)