Friday, April 15, 2011


Another edition of the Black Sun experimental music and film event is coming up this easter weekend! The live acts, curated as always by Vicky Langan, feature Daniel Higgs, with Raising Holy Sparks, Rory Francis O'Brien and Sacred Harp Singers of Cork also on the programme.

The film section, programmed by me, consists of two early films by Peter Rose. Please see the programme notes below....

Black Sun
Saturday April 23rd, Doors 7pm, €8
Camden Palace Hotel, Camden Quay, Cork

This April’s Black Sun film screening is devoted to two hypnotic films by American artist Peter Rose. Active in film, video, installation and performance since 1968, Rose’s work interrogates the nature of time, space, light and perception, often drawing influence from his background in mathematics. Although subsequently known for his work involving language used as written text on screen, the two early works in this programme are both strikingly hallucinatory explorations of space.

Analogies: studies in the movement of time (14 mins, 1977) has been described by Rose as ‘an intriguing series of visual riddles’. Simple camera movements taking place around a plain, institutional looking building are rearranged as multiple screens according to structuralist principles, allowing several perspectives on the same action, often with slight time delays between them. This opens space, movement and gesture to dizzying new permutations. For example, in the words of Noel Carroll, "when Rose fills the screen with twenty-five images, the experience is akin to music. An image ripples across the screen as a theme echoes across the instruments of an orchestra, giving way to complicated designs, each image an arabesque in a Persian rug."

Incantation (13 mins, 1970) is an ecstatic montage of images of nature- trees, plants, the sun, the moon, water- rapidly layered and intercut in a way that suggests a powerful dynamic force behind natural rhythms. Its irresistible energy is enhanced by the use of a compelling, breath-based Islamic chant on the soundtrack, which brings a prayer-like energy to the film. Astoundingly, this exceptionally visually dense, yet precise, work was created entirely in camera on Super-8 film, with no post-production work performed on the image at all. In our day of instantly accessible digital manipulation, such a technical feat appears all the more marvelous- and its results all the more gorgeous.

Special thanks to Pip Chodorov, without whose help this screening would not be possible.


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