AND... by Barbara Sternberg

 

This is a collaboration (interactive). Together we're making this piece (I almost said film). I'm putting forward some thoughts, images, sensations, and, off to one side, influences that form a larger context. You might decide to stop here. Flip forward. Inject some commentary. How will I know?

 

I read a book (well, parts of a book) called The Hero: Myth, Image, Symbol. It was a period when I was having a hard time getting out of bed. Afraid, I just wanted to sleep. I realized then that the real heroes are you and I, Everyman, who get up and live each day, who face the uncertainties and struggles of life, the paradoxes... life and death, living with the knowledge of death, knowing that we can't know.

 

The mystery that is in the everyday. No, the mystery that is the everyday. The awesome/awfulness of life.

 

All of your past, is it more than a dream to you right now? Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

 

Possum, ergo sum. (I can, therefore I am.) Simone Weil

 

Reason's last step is that there are a number of things beyond it. Pascal

 

Filming the daily, what's around. Observing the play of life, its rhythms, patterns. Feel the wind. Noticing the similarities in seeming differences. Everything is related. The multitudinous manyness and relatedness. Where are the boundaries between you and me?

 

Earth Air Fire Water Light Energy transmutes.

 

Repetition is a principle in life. The sun rises everyday. Habit, ritual, identity. And yet, there is no repetition possible! The third tap differs from the first by virtue of being third not first. (Gertrude Stein's insistence versus repetition.) You can't step into the same stream twice.

 

Repetition as a principle in film. And time. And motion. In other words, film is like life. Is inherently involved with the same basic principles. Is fleeting, ephemeral just as you and I are. Needs repetition (but with slight differences) for meaning and for structure to be apparent. Has past (memory) and future (anticipation). Can I or a film be solely in the present? Film is in time and of light. Exists in a tension between what is real and what is illusion. (There is no motion in a motion picture.) Is change the reality and permanence the illusion or vice versa?

 

Your life is like a candle burning. Whether you are aware of it or not, it is burning. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

 

The more real a thing is, the more mysterious it becomes. Jack Chambers

 

Film's emulsion is analogous to the 'stuff' of life. Images appear and disappear; we have our time upon the stage. The movement of construction and destruction, form and formlessness, shadow and light. Layers of images accumulating meaning over time. And time cannot be held.

 

Picture: leaves fluttering, flames flickering, water splashing a child's face shocking him, waves hitting the shore, a hand groping blindly forward, a rocking chair rocking...

 

I work with images bodily, suggestively between representation and abstraction, between blurred and distinct. Beyond naming is being.

 

How many colours are there in a field of grass to a crawling baby unaware of the word 'green'... Stan Brakhage

 

Our movies are extensions of our own pulse, of our heartbeat, of our eyes, our fingertips... Jonas Mekas

 

Film is a medium of endless play discrete bits of time/space set next to each other; the orange of tungsten (inner), the blue of daylight (outer); sound as foil, context, content and the silence of stillness (being). Creating an experience in film. Wow! How was it for you?

 

Art is to embrace others whether to convey something difficult or talk about light. Joyce Wieland

 

What is meant by reality? ...now to be found in a dusty road, now in a scrap of newspaper in the street, now in a daffodil in the sun. It lights up a group in a room and stamps some casual saying... But whatever it touches, it fixes and makes permanent. That is what is left of past time and of our loves and hates. Virginia Woolf

 

I find that raising my eyes slightly above what I am regarding so that the thing is a little out of focus seems to bring the spiritual into clearer vision... Emily Carr

 

It was enough to exist, preferably still and silent, in order to feel its mark...the mark of existence. Clarice Lispector

 

Originally published in Lux ed. Steve Reinke and Tom Taylor, YYZ Books: Toronto, 2000