I am happy to announce an exciting series of upcoming events that I have been organizing as part of the Aberdeen Sound Festival in collaboration with Ross Whyte, a colleague in Music. In September, we will be hosting SCRATCH, a set of workshops and film screenings that will introduce participants to a variety of recycled, found footage, and recycled cinema practices, along with the basics of sound production and recording.
If you will be in Aberdeen on June 12th, please join the Film and Visual Culture department for a workshop focused on the relationship between animal life and the moving image. From the organizers:
The workshop asks how different dynamics of (re)production – of images, of animals – converge within the circulation of global agri-capital. Yet it also asks broader questions about the relations between cinematic and nonhuman worlds, and about the ethics and politics of images of animal life.
The programme includes the following speakers/papers:
Dr Anat Pick (Queen Mary), “Animal Life in the Cinematic Umwelt'”
Professor Claire Molloy (Edge Hill), “Industrialized food and the politics of pleasure”
Dr Laura McMahon (Gonville & Caius, Cambridge), “Screening Pigs: Moving Images, Materiality and the Production of Species”
Mr Chris Heppell (Aberdeen), “The Withdrawal of Sense in Michelangelo Frammartino’s Le Quattro Volte (2010)”
The workshop will run from 10am to 5pm in the Craig Suite in the Sir Duncan Rice Library. There will be lunch, as well as tea and coffee at relevant intervals. If you are interested in attending the workshop (it is free), please email email@example.com.
Excerpts from “Shadow Play,” a series of silent/film sound events held at the University of Aberdeen in December 2011 are available (for now) online.
The neo-Benshi performance of The Adventures of Prince Achmed (Lotte Reiniger, 1926) can be found here. My colleagues, Dr. Simon Ward (Film and Visual Culture), Dr. Laura McMahon (Film and Visual Culture), and Dr. Nate Jezzi (Philosophy) were kind enough to lend their voices. Ross Whyte provided additional sound tech and effects.
Ross Whyte’s wonderful re-score of Piccadilly (E.A. Dupont, 1929) can be found here. Keep your ears open around 6:30.
Smithereens (Ross Whyte, 2011)
Pete Stollery, a Professor in Composition and Electroacoustic Music at the University of Aberdeen, passed this short piece along to me a few days ago. It was composed and created by Ross Whyte, a musician and PhD student at the University of Aberdeen, whose research explores “audio-visual intermedia and multi-sensory perception in music.” You can find Whyte and more of his work here.
The film echoes the woman-on-the-stairs of Leger’s Ballet Mecanique. But it manages much more than nods to history, the pleasures of found footage, or the ghosts of mechanical reproduction. Whyte’s use of sound remakes the image(s), brings texture to these early spaces, and plays with the absurdities and excesses hiding just beyond the chase scene.
Smithereens also invites us to spend time with (several kinds of) orphans. I couldn’t help but wonder: Who is this girl? Where is she going? Did she ever get there?