The Archive and OKJA!!

The show will start 15 minutes early!!

My film, “The Archive…” is playing as an OPENER for “Okja” at the IFS in Boulder on the evenings of Sunday Nov. 4th and Monday Nov. 5th. I know it’s on Netflix, but it’s better on the big screen and in the temple of the moving image which we all know as Muenzinger auditorium.

Come early and Be seated by 7:15 !!! to see “The Archive of the Movements of Inanimate Objects”, the perfect short opener for “Okja”.

Here are two reviews to get you ready for this short and then longer double feature:

Review: “In ‘Okja,’ a Girl and Her Pig Take on the Food Industrial Complex”

– By A. O. SCOTT

“Okja,” not unlike “E. T.,” is about how a young person achieves moral insight by connecting with and fighting for a nonhuman creature. Okja’s oppressors, like E. T.’s, are part of a system that refuses to recognize her as anything more than a thing…

…The human performers are all brilliant, but the movie belongs to its title character and her digitally conjured, genetically modified ilk. Okja is a miracle of imagination and technique, and “Okja” insists, with abundant mischief and absolute sincerity, that she possesses a soul.

Review: “The Archive of the Movements of Inanimate Objects

– By ALEX COX

“Brilliant! …A lot of shorts (and longs) seem to have no message or moral purpose but your film absolutely does. It is a really strong statement not only against vivisection and cruelty to things we don’t understand, but also about the perversity of technology and the capriciousness of man, or the man/beast which we are. This is really fine, thought-provoking work – beautifully realized and deeply disturbing. Thank you for doing it! ”

Posted in Film Reviews

Profound (or shallow?) Objectification

Profound objectification is a method of practicing a mind state of equanimity that a lot of artists are familiar with because it comes from practicing drawing, or photography, or painting, or sculpting, or any art practice where you’re doing a lot of observing.

Handknee, graphite and charcoal on paper

Surfing in place, Digital Sketch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It comes with drawing from observation. As you practice more, you start to see past your own desires, and past your own assumptions of the subject in it’s relationship to you. You really see shallower as well as deeper. You start to see shallower than the meaning, shallower than the surface, shallower until it’s just the light that you’re witnessing. The light that simply bounces from the surface. The light that’s reflected and refracted inside the surface, and then comes back toward you. It’s just the light that you’re looking at rather than what you want the object to be. It starts to simply be what it is. You start to see it without all the extra stuff that you put on it, and you realize that it exists in it’s own right. The object has autonomy outside it’s relation to you. This is a clearer and more humble version of anything you look at, without the names for things we all agree on, or the names you call things by, but you start to see it by it’s name as it’s called in your eye, only by the light that returns from it at the moment you’re watching.

Dynamic gesture, charcoal on paper

Not again, charcoal on paper

It’s this kind of seeing that allows you to see the spirit in the inanimate object. You don’t have to imagine it, you don’t have to know it, you don’t have to make any decisions about it at all, you just have to see it without all the naming and choosing and wanting and deciding and knowing. The light as it is in it’s shallow nothingness strips you of all the artifice from your understanding of what you’re seeing, and it lets you profoundly objectify the thing while you maintain your empathy and compassion for it. Most objectification leads to disrespect because you retain your desire, you retain a central position in your universe, you retain your ego, objectification from egocentrism. Whereas, this shallow-yet-profound-objectification opens you up to the ability to respect anything, real or imagined, alive or inanimate. The priorities and hierarchies in the world disintegrate from your sight and fall away. How respectful could the world we live in be, if all things were offered the same respect by virtue of the way we see them, rather than how we think about them, name them, speak of them, and desire them.” 

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The Archive: notes…

 

The Archive of the Movements of Inanimate Objects

“I want people to take as much as they can from the movie.

“It started as a basic psychodrama, with a character entering a space and investigating what seems strange and then possibly finding something that they can’t understand. The space is defined by the character’s ignorance in relation to what they are seeing. As it’s said in the world, “you see what you want to see.” But, of course, there’s a spirit of truth that lives intrinsically behind what we see and what we don’t. What many people call God, I guess.

“Then the character finds something and has both an external and internal – or objective and subjective – experience with what they take from that place, all of this “mixed experience” is fairly easy to express through animation because it’s all constructed as collage, so what’s interior can be exterior and vice versa, very much like our simultaneous interior and exterior experience in conscious life. That’s what I love so much about animation, it’s how much better it expresses reality than live action cinematography! Yes motion is inherent to realism, but it’s not the whole story. Internal moving-visual-thinking is the other half, and for some it’s way more than half.

“So, I was turning that into a kind of essay on the very normal experience of objectification and desire for answers, and the capacity for compassion and empathy in the face of that as well. The film is a real human story about our role as a mind in the world, and how it affects the world, and how it affects ourselves for that matter. I think it reaches way past the narrative itself, and into a kind of poetic mythologizing of “the questioner of reality”, or “the scientist”, who we all are in some way, and who is also human, and who also has a spiritual side, but then has to make compromises for their own humanity, and for their own empathy, in order to even ask the questions that they want to ask about the world and what they’ve found.

“It’s a story of poetic redemption and consequences, but, maybe there are consequences to questions that we don’t really have a choice in asking. So, in some ways, the film is a dramatization of everyday experience, and what we do to our minds and to our own spirits in order to navigate this journey that we’re all on. To accept the consequences of our actions, to continue to act, and ask our questions, and make choices about what we will sacrifice on a daily basis, and in many ways, also while we sleep and dream.” 

C. Pearce

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