Archive for video

From the Archives: Floating Point

This video is an eight minute excerpt of a 12 minute improvisation (I think Sarah ran out of tape). As students in an M.F.A. program (it looks like their site went downhill after Fish went to RISD), the four of us had been playing together for a few months. We recorded some really interesting sessions, learning the soundscape of each instrument. The masks were donned as last-minute inspiration, but it was the first time we’d played with them:

This is the one and only public performance from the group we called Floating Point: Andrew Lynn on cello, Stephan Moore on laptop, Naomi Ture on violin, and myself on guitar.

From the Archives: Live Improvisation on Piano and Electronics

One of the most important lessons artists need to learn is one that is never taught: document everything. It’s gotten so much easier in recent years and people still forget to point a camera at their projects. Good documentation keeps your ideas alive.

After recently getting my video groove back on, I pulled out some video archives. The perspective in this video adds an extra layer to it — a live improvised composition of its own. Video artist Sarah Smiley documented this for me in May of 2002.

I had been doing a series of piano experiments, with the main goal of playing back reversed piano. There’s something magical about the slow build of blended notes played backward. Looking back, I’m proud of what I was able to do with the technology. I have my critiques of the performance itself, but overall I’m happy with it. I miss having access to a piano, and both the technical and creative support that school provides.

Palenque

For anyone who might visit, we stayed at a hoste/hotel called Maya Bell. It’s actually inside the National Park of Palenque. We had a great time exploring and soaking in the ancient city.

Some of my best photos from the trip were shot here in Palenque.

Video recorded September 20, 2007

San Juan Chamula

While shooting in the town square, a tour guide approached and told me I should put the camera away. He said the police would take my camera and throw me in jail. At first, I thought he was just trying to get me to pay to join his tour.

The town enjoys unique autonomous status within Mexico. No outside police or military are allowed in the village. Chamulas have their own police force. – Wikipedia

A few minutes later, I was eating a bowl of chicken soup at a streetside restaurant. The texture of the chicken was unlike any I'd ever eaten. It was more chewy, almost spongy. After a few bites, I realized this chicken leg was previously attached to one of the many running freely nearby. It wasn't the couped-up, hormone-filled, force-fed flavor I was used to. The visceral experience gave me a sudden respect for my surroundings and I didnt take the camera out of the bag again.

View more photos of San Juan Chamula.

Video recorded September 19, 2007

Cañon del Sumidero & Lagunas de Montebello

Chiapas is beautiful. We visited Sumidero Canyon, las Cascadas el Chiflón, las Lagunas de Montebello, and more.

(on technical note, I've started using iMovie'08 instead of Final Cut Pro for these videos. I still haven't finished editing our summer vacation from 2006 in FCP. I'm hoping the simplicity of iMovie (limited options) continues to speed up the process and get through all this tape…)

Video recorded September 16, 2007

El Grito Desde Tuxtla Gutiérrez

On the first night of our trip to Chiapas, we found ourselves in the central plaza of Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Septemeber 15, 2007.

I didn't see any other tourists that night; I stuck out like a sore thumb. I ate an overpriced carne adobada steak with a plastic fork and butterknife, on a plastic plate, over a plastic tableclothed plastic table. Needless to say, it wasn't easy to eat and I spilled most of my drink from the wobbly cutting.

This was the first real "grito" I've witnessed, besides the televised version of the president in Mexico City. Here, the governer of Chiapas does the honors. Rosario says it was the weakest grito she'd ever seen.

At least there were fireworks…