WHERE HE MAY
Screened at CINEMA BOREALIS
Ben Russell in person!
Presented in Association with MCA CHICAGO
September 19, 2010
Set in Surinam, Russell’s latest investigation of ethnography and representation is simultaneously beautiful, political, and formally complicated. Shot on 16mm Steadicam in thirteen long takes, the film follows two Saramaccan brothers as they trace the path their ancestors took to escape Dutch enslavement 300 years earlier. The film revisits the ecstatic qualities seen in Russell’s short TRYPPS films (which focus on varying notions of psychedelia and trance); the constant forward motion of LET EACH ONE is meditative and leisurely (the other, quieter pole of psychedelic experience). The brothers travel on foot, by bus, and by boat–the camera at once an observer of and a participant in the arduous journey. The film is also a telling document of Surinam’s shifting landscape, as the brothers pass through a crowded city, lush jungles, a gold mine, and rural villages. It provides a startling and nearly tangible experience of a world seldom seen on avant-garde screens, a long otherworldly walk with plenty of room to consider the notion of “other.”
LET EACH ONE GO WHERE HE MAY (2009, 135 min, 16mm)
This screening was presented as part of MCA CHICAGO’s UBS 12X12 New Artists/New Work Exhibition which features Russell in September. The exhibition was augmented by a series of screenings and by a live collaborative expanded cinema performance by Russell and Chicago artist, Joe Grimm.
Filed under: documentary, film