Locust Projects presents The Depths, the fourth in a series of guest curated video exhibitions in Locust Projects’ Screening Room that launched in fall 2019. Guest curated by filmmaker and video artist, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, the exhibition features works by Isabelle Carbonell, Miguel Hilari, Los Ingrávidos, Sofía Gallisá Muriente and Sindhu Thirumalaisamy.
Toxic Lake, Salt On Film, Moon Goddess Through Violence, through desert cactus, a mine and the photographs of those who labored them. This series unfolds through relations of material and sensorial experience, they arise from an inseparability of what we think of as "place" from historical events or the deep time of geology from a multi-perspectival experimental film language.
- Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, guest curator
PART ONE: On view November 19 – December 23, 2021
Sofía Gallisá Muriente
Asimilar y Destruir (Assimilate and Destroy I), (2018)
Assimilate and Destroy is a film which speaks both socially and materially about the strangeness of an ice rink in Puerto Rico, and how climate conditions memory. A digital transfer of a 16mm film, Assimilate and Destroy documents an ice skating rink in Puerto Rico as it melts and decomposes in salt, a mineral that, among other properties, liberates cold and absorbs humidity. The documentation of these chemical processes that corrode the image is transferred to the imaginary of the snow in the context of the US colony and its relationship to a long history of forced symbolic reconciliations. Assimilate and Destroy makes visible the forms in which climate conditions memory in the tropics, experimenting with biodeterioration processes on celluloid. The title of the piece refers to two processes that occur simultaneously during the decomposition of film due to humidity, considering their poetic and strategic implications in order to digest political processes.
The Lake and the Lake (2019), 38 min.
The Lake and the Lake dwells in the peripheries of Bellandur lake in Bangalore, where the act of observation is interrupted by flying foam, noxious gases, daydreams, and questions from passers-by. Despite its spectacular toxicity, the lake remains a valuable resource and refuge for counterpublics. Standing alongside fishing communities, migrant waste workers, security guards, street dogs, and children, it is evident that there is no nature that doesn't also include all of us.
PART TWO: On view January 5 – February 5, 2022
The Blessed Assurance (2018), 22 min.
The Blessed Assurance is a sensorial documentary experience, a meditation on livelihood exploring both man and jellyfish in the otherworldly ecosystem found on an American trawl boat. Visceral images and sounds immerse us in a primordial world, decentering the human and even going inside a jellyfish.
Bocamina/Pithole (2019) 22m
Filmed in the Bolivian city of Potosí, Bocamina concerns the miners who work in Cerro Rico, the mountain of silver ore that overlooks the city. Emerging from the darkness, faces begin a dialogue with those from years long past.
Colectivo Los Ingrávidos
Coyolxauhqui (2017), 9 min, 46 sec.
Colectivo Los Ingrávidos’ film Coyolxauhqui recasts the mythical dismemberment of the Aztec Moon goddess Coyolxauhqui by her brother Huitzilopochtli, the deity of war, the Sun and human sacrifice. The film is a poem of perception, one that unveils how contemporary Mexican femicide is linked to a patriarchal history with roots in deeper cultural constructs. The film captures the deserted landscape of La Mixteca in Oaxaca, known for its textile industry, creating a parallel between the Aztec myth and the violent murders of women and girls working at textile manufacturing plants in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
Isabelle Carbonell is a Belgian-Uruguayan-American award-winning sci-fi documentary filmmaker. Currently she is a PhD Candidate in Film and Digital Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her work lies at the intersection of expanded documentary, environmental justice, and the Anthropocene, while striving to develop new visual and sonic approaches and methods to rethink documentary filmmaking. Imbued in all her work is the connection between the slow violence of environmental disaster, bodies of water, and the future.
Miguel Hilari (b. Hamburg, 1985, lives La Paz, Bolivia) studied cinema in La Paz, Santiago de Chile and in Barcelona. His documentary films (El corral y el viento, 2014; Compañía, 2019; Bocamina, 2019) center on work, colonial history, migration and indigenous culture. Pre-existing images often are re-elaborated and questioned. His films have been shown and won awards at various international film festivals. He also works as a producer and editor and runs the project Proyecto Torrente involving image and sound workshops in rural schools.
Colectivo Los Ingrávidos (Mexico) was formed in order to provide a radical, avant-garde alternative to the commercial and corporate mode of filmmaking in Mexico and internationally. They have created 300+ films since 2012. Their film and digital artworks have been exhibited at Arnolfini Gallery, International Film Festival Rotterdam, International Film Festival Oberhausen, Flaherty Film Seminar, VDrome, Crossroads, Filmadrid, Ambulante Cine Documental (Mexico City), Media City Film Festival and the 2019 Whitney Biennial. They were awarded the Images Festival’s Marian McMahon Award and Third Prize at MCFF (2018). Their recent collection of poetry SOLARIS was published by Evidence at the Centre for Expanded Poetics (Montréal).
Sofía Gallisá Muriente (b. 1986, San Juan, Puerto Rico) Sofía Gallisá Muriente is a Puerto Rican visual artist working mainly with video, film, photography, and text. Through multiple approaches to documentation, her work deepens the subjectivity of historical narratives, examining formal and informal archives, popular imaginaries and visual culture. She earned a BFA in Film & TV Production and Latin American Studies at New York University and has participated in experimental pedagogical platforms led by artists, like Anhoek School and Beta-Local’s La Práctica, substituting graduate studies with a collaborative process of learning and unlearning. She has been a resident artist of Museo La Ene (Argentina), Alice Yard (Trinidad & Tobago), Solar (Tenerife), and Catapult, as well as a fellow of the Flaherty Seminar and the Smithsonian Institute. She has exhibited in the Whitney Biennial, the Queens Museum, the Getty’s PST: LA/LA, ifa Galerie in Berlin, MAC in Puerto Rico, MALBA in Argentina and CCA Glasgow, among others. From 2014 to 2020 she was Co-director of the artist-run, non-profit organization Beta-Local, dedicated to fostering knowledge exchange and transdisciplinary practices in Puerto Rico. She is currently also a fellow of the Puerto Rican Arts Initiative.
Sindhu Thirumalaisamy's work across moving images, sound, and text, is rooted in a critical listening practice. It centres (un)common spaces and the possibilities for speech and action with/in them. Sindhu holds a diploma in digital video production from Srishti School of Art, Design, and Technology, Bangalore, and an MFA in visual art from the University of California, San Diego. She is a 2020–22 Core fellow at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Sindhu's film, The Lake and The Lake, won the Best Documentary Award at the 58th Ann Arbor Film Festival. Recent exhibitions include: Camden International Film Festival, Open City Documentary Festival, BlackStar Film Festival, DokuFest, Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM), Kinodot Experimental Film Festival, EFA Project Space, Union Docs, Squeaky Wheel Film & Media Center, Artists’ Television Access, Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, Current:LA Triennial, The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, and San Diego Museum of Art.
ABOUT THE GUEST CURATOR
Beatriz Santiago Muñoz (b. San Juan, 1972, lives San Juan) is an artist who works primarily with film and video, whether as single-channel works or moving image installations. She approaches each work as a structured improvisation involving the film's materials and grounded in the phenomenological world and history of her subject, whether it is a person, a movement, or a place. Her present work is concerned with a visual poetics of the Caribbean, the sensorial unconscious of anti-colonialism, and wreckage in all its forms. Recent solo exhibitions include: Beatriz Santiago Muñoz: Field Station at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University (2019); Nuevos Materiales at Museo Amparo, Puebla, Mexico (2018); Rodarán cabezas at Espacio Odeón in Bogotá, Colombia; and A Universe of Fragile Mirrors at Pérez Art Museum Miami (2016). Her work has also been shown in the Whitney Biennial, New York (2017), New Museum for Contemporary Art, New York; and El Museo del Barrio, New York; among others. In 2021 her work was included in the 34th Sao Paulo Biennale and at the National Museum Cardiff as a recipient of the Artes Mundi 9 contemporary art prize. Her work is included in Prospect.5 in New Orleans.
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