If I post a lot of films by Marc Neys A.K.A. Swoon (while still failing to quite keep up with his output), it’s because he’s continually trying new things and not falling into a groove. This is an especially good example of that, blending two poems by two different poets, Meg Tuite and David Tomaloff, into a new whole, and taking its title from an unpublished chapbook they’ve co-authored, Everything But the Sky. It appeared at Gnarled Oak on April 10, along with some explanatory text:
Poem “No Code” & voice by David Tomaloff
Poem “I am walking beside me” by Meg Tuite
Essentially, EVERYTHING BUT THE SKY explores the way that dream logic and interpretation often work in context to ordinary events taking place within our daily lives. Think of it as reverse dream interpretation–each of David Tomaloff’s poems is a dream poem whose images might have been the manifestation of the thoughts, emotions, and events that each of Meg Tuite’s flash pieces describe before it. In this way, each pair of poems is a complete set, and, likely, one could begin to see a greater narrative as one begins joining these sets. –David Tomaloff
I created a soundtrack around David’s own narration of his poem and presented that scape with a (horizontal split screen) film composition with Meg’s poem appearing as text on screen. –Swoon
Having one text appear on-screen while another is delivered via voiceover is an interesting and I think effective way to translate a collaborative poetry project into film. There are some additional process notes on Swoon’s blog, as well as the text of both poems.
After “I’m sorry but I’ve witnessed what’s under your suburban bruises” it was clear for me I wanted to work with the words of Meg Tuite again .
Last summer we started another collaboration.
Soundscapes by my hand were sent to her, words came flying back to me.
Back and forth…
Words got picked out, recordings were made.
The [sound]track not only give me a title, it also steered me in the right direction for the images. I didn’t want a ‘storyline’ or a strong narrative. They would stand in the way of the words.
On the other hand I wanted strong emotions, truthful. The whole thing needed a dreamlike feeling of alienation to. I decided on a combination of two different sources;
‘Ménilmontant’ (Markus David Sussmanovitch Kaplan, 1926) and ‘Max Fait de la Photo’ (Lucien Nonguet, 1913)
I added colour and some layers of light.
Something in the combination of her words/voice and these sounds led me back to a movie I used in another video, FF Coppola’s ‘Dementia 13’
I picked out a few scenes and faces and started editing. Looked for the right movements that I could feature as some kind of recurring visual chorus.
In the end I added a layer of lights and colours.