Internal Sun | FILM | SOUND | 5" | GEORGIAN/ENGLISH | 2020
(For Mamuka, who films the sunrise every morning from his home)
Internal Sun takes its cue from the 12 hour time difference between the filmmaker’s original home in Tbilisi, Georgia and the far-flung home that they established in Northern California during the state's first shelter-in-place order. Whenever one is bright, the other is invariable dark; the film dwells on this paradox of simultaneous opposition, convening both sides of the sun into a personal and improvised logic.
Born Late | TEXT | WORK IN PROGRESS | 2020
We have been told — again and again — all our lives — (quietly at first, and then to a deafening pitch) — that it’s been getting late. That something should have been done a long time since. That it’s too far gone, that we missed our shot, that we’re down to scrabbling over breadcrumbs.
Few people seem willing to speak about the cadence of a late hour, however: what it brings, and what it calls for.
The late hour bathes in shadows. It coaxes lullabies. It conceives of rest. It swallows hard facts whole, and turns them into equivocations. Its condition is stirred by perceptions as light or as scarce as hairs of silk; that which would not even factor as a mirage to the harsh figurations of midday.
You and I were born late. So why keep time? I think that disavowal of inherent clarity, the subtle yield towards gravity, is the grounds for our resistance to this long and disconcerting day. And we can resist things, not on their own terms, but in another register. That is, falling gracefully. Preventing a fruit declared rotten from being in waste. Refusing to concede our lives to despair. The regenerative art of decay.
You know what lateness feels like to me? It feels like nascency. Like a moment of awe inside a garden that has flowered from uranium. Like a child’s will to strike a match. Like the playground of visions that exhales from the wreckage of another fallen state.
Excerpt from upcoming publication, Radiations Publishing house: Martlesham Walk
Parrot postcard, personal collection
1412 | 16MM FILM | SOUND | 5" | GEORGIAN | 2020
In the anonymous rooms of 5-star hotels in cities and resorts across Georgia, thousands of people have been learning what it means to be locked inside the same room for two weeks. These people live behind a veil; they sleep, they pace, they examine the life that exists beyond their window pane — perhaps exchanging furtive goods, or words of camaraderie with their floor-mates; those with whom they share lost time.
1412 received the jury prize in the COVIDEO section of Batumi International Arthouse Film Festival.
It also featured as part of a video installation, Mementos from the 14th Floor, at Project Artbeat's Moving Gallery in Orbeliani Square, Tbilisi, 12-20 Sept 2020.
Improper Canning Procedures | TEXT | 2020
Before words or continents, there were vowels without consonants.
The vowels would give rise in winces and in kisses (a! o!) — in encyclopaedic tremors of breath,
In the knifelike warbles that emerged,
Like arithmetic between the flesh.
The early risers pass fruit and shards of light down to the forest floor.
Everything is made of small things, but some of them heap up.
As continents gathered, they clamoured for consonance. The engine of sense began to contour air; it studied into air, and found it pliable. The vowels, ever fluid, were congruent to the shape of things.
As the consonants staccato’d over gulps of air, they sculpted intermittent differences everywhere.
We imagined what we were, and so we knew what the difference was.
- Excerpt from text contributed to Rachel Elizabeth Ashton's publication, On Butterflies, Moths, and Other Worldly Creatures (2020)
The Nocturnal Hum | 16MM FILM, DIGITISED | SOUND | 5" | ENGLISH | 2019
To those who moved away or were led to move,
Would later register as a perfume
Causing them to slip a disc in time
and gather, in a sudden rush
Every single time at once
The century turned on its furnace
And the world become a glowing orb
And the fog in San Francisco
Began to drag its feet
As the world, and the fog attenuated
And the images grew —
All too few,
And too clear
The fish grew silent,
And the signals did too
And it would, one day,
"It's not a military secret. It's not the sanitation district. It's not the Army Corps of Engineers. It's not an extraterrestrial, a nuclear device, or a Russian submarine."
The Nocturnal Hum concerns the filmmaker's discovery of acoustic similarities between two forms of sound that are native to Northern California: the warble produced by foghorns as they guide the Bay's ships to safety, and -- beneath the water -- a resonant hum that is produced by toadfish during mating season. These sounds have undulated through the Bay Area for generations, perforating both public and private space.
The film is also about the visual similarities between fog and smoke, the signals that guide us, and the place of perceptual multiplicity -- of 'mistakingness' -- in light of the increasingly unequivocal presence of climate change.
Like a whale-bone corset, like a world that never breathed.
Subdued beneath a fine veil of dust, the cabinet is a scene beyond its own appointment.
Perfectly still, the china lies unthought, delivered from carnality, and only monumental.
Only for the occasional glance does it perform:
A solemn play of light, an affected bow, a sequence of rehearsed images.
Formality reigns, setting a place for ideal forms that — having never arrived — are never considered gone.
This formality signs a contractual release for the hurried, irregular mass of living to go on.
The cabinet conserves the role of a drab paragon,
called to testify upon the release of a tension for perfection.
As far as anyone is concerned, they are as deaf, dumb, and as mute,
And as indispensable, as icebergs.
This is for the iron balustrade and for the flashing wing.
It is for the lift that nods recurrently; for endless acceptance, for a life of undecorated service. For a conveyor belt’s migrations, for the barrow and the long-necked crane, for all the silent workers, for those that do without a stay. Tirelessly, these things propel.
Pause with the spirits of utility. They are hard-heard and uneasy, like a draft beneath a door.
They belong to a world without mirrors, and deflect the gaze.
When their backs break, when they go to rest,
They take their final lodgings in the tide
— just as one of a thousand things moving gradually,
without very much ceremony, from sight.
Video still: West Stacks, Green Library, Stanford University
Stills from 3 channel video installation, Mementos from the 14th Floor