Tuesday, December 28, 2010

books, films and more rain...

I'm well and truly in holiday mode...  didn't start my day till I had finished my book,  breakfast was more like lunch ... then more reading ... then a visit to a bookshop and tonight the cinema! I bought a year's membership to the cinema club tonight! I live near a great cinema - Dendy Portside... and I decided in 2011 I have to see more films!
Its late now and a book awaits...but a quick visit to the blogosphere and I found a video at the wonderfully eclectic blog RECKON which I thought I'd share below. As a lover of circles and geometry why not? Also I'm quite a fan of the music of Philip Glass and recently enjoyed watching a lengthy documentary film on him late one night. 
In fact I was utterly captivated and found myself thinking back to memorable times like seeing his Opera Akhnaton performed in London in 1986. This had a considerable impact on my imagination... having long been sensitive to the connection between art and music. Seeing the first 2 films from the Qatsi trilogy after that (with Glass soundtracks) cemented this composer in my mind as one of enormous interest.

image from Koyaanisqatsi

I saw the film above when living in London, after seeing the Opera. Before London I'd been living on the NSW south coast in a town with a population in the hundred's.... where access to pristine environment was the reason many moved to live here. That contrast with London's millions could not have been greater really... so the film touched a raw nerve with me - much as I adored being in London! 
From the Qatsi website: KOYAANISQATSI, Reggio's debut as a film director and producer, is the first film of the QATSI trilogy. The title is a Hopi Indian word meaning "life out of balance." Created between 1975 and 1982, the film is an apocalyptic vision of the collision of two different worlds -- urban life and technology versus the environment. The musical score was composed by Philip Glass.

image from Powaqqatsi.

This film I saw almost 2 years later after travelling in Egypt and Israel...I was in tel Aviv at the time and  in a way I felt like the things Id been seeing on the streets,  particularly in Cairo,  had somehow seeped into this film. It had such a strong impact - one that worked its way deeply into my psyche!
Qatsi website: Where KOYAANISQATSI dealt with the imbalance between nature and modern society, POWAQQATSI is a celebration of the human-scale endeavor the craftsmanship, spiritual worship, labor and creativity that defines a particular culture. It's also a celebration of rareness -- the delicate beauty in the eyes of an Indian child, the richness of a tapestry woven in Kathmandu -- and yet an observation of how these societies move to a universal drumbeat.
POWAQQATSI is also about contrasting ways of life, and in part how the lure of mechanization and technology and the growth of mega-cities are having a negative effect on small-scale cultures.
The title POWAQQATSI is a Hopi Indian conjunctive -- the word Powaqa, I which refers to a negative sorcerer who lives at the expense of others, and Qatsi --i.e., life.

Geometry and circles - this was originally put together for Sesame Street. Its quite charming if you wish to watch it - 2 mins long!

Excerpt from Koyaanisqatsi

Excerpt from Powaaqatsi

This is the film I mentioned having caught on TV one night recently - called Glass : A Portrait of Philip in Twelve Parts. For 18 months the award winning director Scott Hicks followed the legendary composer.

To read notes from director Scott Hicks about the making of this film... click here.  Website: www.theglassmovie.com .

PS Thanks to Mlle Paradis for informing me the comments box was not working!


Janis said...

Just dashing in to say Happy (belated) Christmas Sophie!

Sophie Munns said...

another xmas Janis!
This one must be quite a change from last years....
thanks for the warm wishes... and the same to you!
S xo

Dom said...

J'aime la façon dont vous partagez ce qui vous touche et vous intéresse et j'ai beaucoup appris de vous cette année. Je vous remercie Sophie et je vous souhaite une excellente fin d'année .... de la joie ... et je nous souhaite à tous et à toutes la confiance en Qui nous sommes... je l'expérimente en moi et pour moi chaque jour.

Anonymous said...

How lovely to hear from you Dom!
Im going to have to get this translated... Im really keen to read what you wrote.
My very best wishes to you for a wonderful 2011 and may it be a wonderfully creatively fulfilling,
Happy New Year!