Films/Videos

A-GEN-CY

Work in progress

Later in the 21st century a young scientist and her colleagues form a cognitive symbiosis with an artificial intelligence system that prototypes solutions to mitigate the accelerating climate crisis and soaring energy needs.

Produced by Veli
With Priya Lorenz and Vanessa Vandy

Supported by Aalto University




Ersatz Gardens

UHD 4k video in fullspectrum and ultraviolet
2021

Ersatz Gardens is an experimental short film about an entangled garden of vision and abstraction, experience and memory, the real and the fake. Perceptual twists transform the garden into a psychological space of images, ideas, time, and economic fragments shaken from both their historical and natural orders.

Footage has been shot after hours in Claude Monet’s garden in Giverny and a nearby 18th century garden of the Physiocrats—a group whose name means “government of nature” and who were the first thinkers to systematize economics. In the Physiocratic view, the “natural order” governed human relations; value came from the land, from agriculture; and artisans were “unproductive appendages.” The video is filmed in the unproductive part of the garden, a garden labyrinth for reflection rather than agricultural products. This estate of the Physiocrats was also visited by the “father of modern capitalism,” Adam Smith; he learned from them an their work and drew heavily on the Physiocrats’ idea that the economy was a circular process.

To these gardens, anti-counterfeiting features from currency such as the British 20-pound note featuring Adam Smith, and credit cards have been added. Anti-counterfeiting features frequently appear in ultraviolet light. While pigeons and doves—a bird which also appears on the Visa card—can see in UV humans ordinarily cannot. However, if the lens of the eye is removed it is possible to see into the UV spectrum. Claude Monet had this procedure carried out in 1923, after which time his paintings are said to have taken a notable turn towards the violet, as Monet always endeavored to “paint what you really see.”




Factitious Flora

Diverse descriptions of flora, from mystical to mechanical, reflect the range of human ideas about plants. Meanwhile, artificial selection physically shapes many plant species. Colonialism and industrialism radically redistributed and reorganized biological life on the planet. Today, automated, controlled environments bring plants into new networks of relations while synthetic biology materializes previously impossible plants. The impact of climate change on Earth’s systems and agriculture drive further vegetal variation and transformation.

Taking the form of an experimental film, Factitious Flora looks toward the ongoing emergence of new botanical possibilities—in both idea and organism—as well as future plant/human, plant/machine, and plant/planet relations. Factitious Flora is developed in close dialogue with plant scientists and horticulturists.

Supported by Forecast




Within the Temple Without

Official selection of IFFR - International Film Festival Rotterdam 2019

Email for private viewing link

“Within the Temple Without” is a journey into the economic unconscious—which is now collective and digital. This journey takes the structure of a dream. The pathway to the Temple of Apollo in Delphi is lined with treasuries for the gods; the alchemical symbol of the caduceus, carried by Hermes, was created from the expulsion of serpents at the Temple of Apollo. The caduceus and other alchemical symbols can be found all over the Bank of England, which drew on alchemical ideas to develop a credit based currency; it became the template of central banks. The Bank for International Settlements in Basel Switzerland is the central bank of the central banks and largely exists outside of any governmental jurisdiction. Handheld video has been algorithmically stabilized, creating an unstable frame and uncanny, convulsing images. Carl Jung’s work with alchemy and the unconscious—both individual and collective—further informs the work. The narrative itself is delivered by a computer application rather than a human. Manipulated and composed sounds from ATMs provide the soundtrack.




The Age of Autonomous Exploration (short excerpt)

Excerpt of 55 minute near-infrared 4K/UHD video

Filmed on an island colonized by the Spanish but where today autonomous planetary rovers with artificial intelligence are being tested. Soundtrack developed from audio recording made in the “crypt” of Casa Colon, Gran Canaria containing replicas of artifacts from the Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City




Geological Evidences

Featured on Vdrome, with an interview by Charles Stankievech

4k/UHD near infrared video with sound

10 minutes

Drawing from genres of science-fiction and documentary and filmed entirely in infrared, “Geological Evidences” address the current uncertainty about the position and future of humans in relation to the earth and climate change. An unclear and unsettling relationship between past, present, and future haunts a landscape that at times seems like another planet, the contemporary moment seen through non-human eyes, or a post-apocalyptic world. “Geological Evidences” was filmed in Schöningen, Germany, in and around an archaeological excavation. The immediate area also includes the open-cast coal mine within which the archeological excavation is located, an exhausted and backfilled coal mine, a coal burning power plant and its waste-water pool, as well as a pasture with horses related to the Paleolithic wild horses hunted in prehistoric Europe.  Infrared radiation is emitted by the earth; it is trapped by the greenhouse gases; this, and the ancient drive for calories (heat units) led to filming in infrared.

Funding provided by the European Commission/NEARCH




Things in Common between Dreams and Animal Behavior

Experiments in interspecies communication—using pages from Gregory Bateson’s “Metalog: What is an Instinct?”

Produced by Ramdom, Progetto GAP, 2015