Friday 21 June 2019
Sonic Bodies, Broken Lines, Reversible Time
Deptford Church Hall, 131 Deptford High St, Deptford, London SE8 4NS
Invernomuto, Last Yearz Interesting Negro & Rowdy SS
7 – 9pm
Buy tickets here: £5
Sonic Bodies, Broken Lines, Reversible Time is a screening and live performance event that brings together Invernomuto’s film Negus and Last Yearz Interesting Negro & Rowdy SS’ performance Fury1. From different perspectives, both works produce scenarios in which sound operates as the main agent for the construction of new realities and forms of subjectivity.
The fact that subjectivity never corresponds with a defined identity, but rather with a multiplicity of modes of being in constant states of becoming, is something that is as evident as it is hard to acknowledge. Being someone does not imply anything substantial; it is rather a way to experience reality, which unsteadily unfolds in time and space. Subjectivity is therefore akin to rhythmic events that synchronise heterogeneous elements and create new constellations of meaning. Rather than being constrained within linear spatio-temporal frameworks, processes of subjectivation break their consistency and reconfigure them according to flows of affects and desires, which expand and contract like bass waves of Lee “Scratch” Perry’s dub music. In Negus, dub’s sound frequencies allow for going back and forth in time, from Ethiopia to Jamaica, through Italy, and back to Ethiopia. It is a feedback loop that crosses temporal and spatial lines, from one side to another of the planet, opening up spaces for unexpected forms of experience and ways of living. In Fury1, Last Yearz Interesting Negro and Rowdy SS intensely operate this sonic recursivity as well. Navigating the space inflated by Rowdy SS’ sonic and rhythmic frequencies, LYIN’s body movements escalate as fractals that construct new architectures of time and experience.
Last Yearz Interesting Negro & Rowdy SS
Fury consists of a series of works concerned with boundaries, openings, intimacy, and spectacle in performance. In Fury1, LYIN and Rowdy SS navigate space together through live simultaneous practices of responsive sonic manipulation and dance. Collapsing time and working with the simultaneous presence of past-future-now; for you and for us in different ways at the same time. Silence and stillness are fictions; holding the density, feeling out languages of darkness and omissions. Sound and bodies in wordless dialog like light that refracts in the prism of the moving crowd. Always movement.
Italy, 2016, 70 minutes
Negus explores the convergence of history, myth and magic through the complex and competing legacies of Ethiopia’s last emperor Haile Selassie I. In Italy during the fascist rule of Mussolini, Selassie was portrayed as a black devil, justifying Italy’s invasion of Ethiopia. During the same period the religion of Rastafarianism was emerging in Jamaica and claiming Selassie as their living God and the black Christ resurrected. Negus is powered from the void between these two irreconcilable realities.
Lee 'Scratch' Perry — godfather of dub music and an architect of the foundational sounds of reggae — takes on a double presence in the film. He lurks as a spiritual ghost over the Black Ark, his former recording studio in Kingston, Jamaica that he burned down in the 1980s, and as master of a ritual fire ceremony performed in Italy to re-invoke the spirit of Ethiopia's last emperor.
The film follows a circular structure and its locations (Italy, Ethiopia and Jamaica) are constantly mixed. Its interwoven form insists that the trajectories of communities, ideologies and mythologies are never one-way vectors, but always exist in the complexity of infinite feedback and recourse.