Booklist

I’m using this space as a place to list everything I am/plan to read for this residency.

In Praise of Paths by Torbjorn Ekelund (translated by Becky L. Crook)
published by Greystone Books, Canada 2020
EAN: 9781771644952

The Old Straight Track by Alfred Watkins (Kindle edition)
published by Heritage Hunter 2017

The Old Ways by Robert MacFarlane
published by Penguin books 2013
EAN: 9780141030586

The Book of Trespass: Crossing the Lines that Divide Us by Nick Hayes
published by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC 2021
EAN: 9781526604729

Interview with artist …kruse

Jamie Wyld (Vital Capacities’ director): Thanks for being part of the Vital Capacities residency programme! Can you say a little about yourself and your work, perhaps in relation to what you’re thinking about doing during the residency?

Thank you for inviting me to take part! I always say that I am a neurodivergent visual artist and writer and kind of leave it at that. I tend to compartmentalise my life; over here is art, over there is everything else. I’m trying to bring things together into a more cohesive whole these days though, because that feels more honest. So a more accurate description would be, I am a neurodivergent visual artist, walker, knitter, writer, sewist, pagan, crone-in-becoming, small business owner, mother, disabled, white, cis female, human animal/cyborg. I draw, design, make, illustrate, write stories, write non fiction and spend a great deal of time in an imaginary post-climate-crisis future with a cyborg called AuTCRONE. I’m currently learning to play the recorder.

JW: One of the aims of Vital Capacities is to create an accessible site (so more people can use it) – how do you think this will be an opportunity to develop your way of working?

I think this is a wonderful and important project and I am aware that I actually don’t do enough to make my own online presence more accessible. My neurodivergent brain really struggles with this, writing Alt Text is tortuous for instance (because my brain struggles to simplify things) but I want everyone to be included so I am looking forward to learning more about creating accessible content. I hope it will become second nature to do after spending time working on Vital Capacities site.

JW: What would you like to achieve through the residency? Is there a particular project you’ll be focusing on?

Yes, I’m going to be using this residency as an opportunity to research my interest in paths and tracks. Walking is a very complex thing for me and touches on many different areas of my life and practice. For instance, I have psoriatic arthritis, a chronic autoimmune disorder, which means that my body often hurts and walking can be painful, yet walking also helps ease my condition, helping my joints stay relatively flexible. I am invested in the idea of walking as medicine, though I don’t think it has to be done on two feet. Following a path, actually or metaphorically, especially a path that takes a person outside and into the world, feels like an inherently positive act. 

I find walking a very creative thing to do and I often record my walks using video, sound, photography, writing and drawing. I also use walking as an opportunity to test my ideas regarding clothing, hand work, relationship to materials, my relationship to capitalism and testing minimalism/essentialism. Walking connects me in a very direct way with my ancestors, with history, and is an invitation to become an animal among animals. 

Hmm, walking is a very complex subject for me! (laughs) I want to use this residency to  tighten the focus of my thoughts, using the notion of The Path to direct my making and thinking.

JW: How do you see the next few weeks unfolding? Where would you like it to take you?
One of the things I am looking forward to is the relationship with the other artists and curators involved in the residency. I’m excited to see what this cohort is working on and hope that some creative and interesting conversations will happen between us.
I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to work ‘deep,’ to focus on my interest in paths and tracks. I don’t really know where I will end up, I’m just following the path as it unfolds, I don’t want to know where I will be at the end of this journey until I get there!

Body Work, Breakdowns and Burn Out: in resistance of Hyperability

A grey background with a 3d diagram of a silver car body. Over the top is the title 'CAR BODY CONSTRUCTION' in red text. Around the diagram are the names of the different car body parts with black lines pointing to their corresponding section, these include 'roof panel', 'panel trunk', 'centre pillar' and 'scuttle base'.

Getting towards the end of this residency and my body feels close to a burn out. Working while your six month old wakes you up every hour during the night like a sleep torture program has been.. hard. My insides are starting to jolt and shudder.

I have been considering the way we describe the shell of an automobile as a ‘body’, an external casing which holds in all of the car or lorry’s guts. There are auto body repair shops for when you damage your body or car and truck body builders for when you want an upgrade.

Researching this also led me to a strange trend of body builders (the weight lifting type) posing with their cars and this amazingly comical article to help body builders choose the best car for them which says ..

‘As bodybuilders, you cannot survive without a car. A good and big car will not only look proportional to you but will also serve your needs adequately.’

A large white expensive car stands in what looks like a slightly mountainous desert. On the bonnet lies someone in a bikini and heels with an expressionless face
via guagemagazine

And of course there is the ‘sports car’.

These automobile bodies can be symbols of wealth, power, authority, capitalism, work, burn out or protest. During times of social unrest and resistance, the news and media is often littered with images and videos of burning cars (ACAB). When our physical bodies become exhausted by the pressures of capitalism and the inequalities of structural oppression, we also burn out and break down.

three British police vans parked in a narrow street at night. They are parked at angles and not in a straight line. The left van is on fire which is bursting out of the front window and sides. The bonnet is covered in graffiti which says 'kill' and 'ACAB'. Smoke is billowing and filling the top part of the image, it is glowing orange and red from the fire and blue from the van's lights. The vans in the middle and on the right are not on fire. Their headlights and blue emergency lights are on. A silhouette figure of a person is visible in the foreground on the right from behind.
police vans burning at a Bristol ‘kill the bill’ protest earlier this year via theguardian

I like to think of myself as a monster truck; big, slow, colourful and garish, with very little functional use other than for fun.. a performative body that rests a lot and comes out bouncing and blazing for a show every so often when I feel like it, only to inevitably and predictably crash and burn at the end.

A pink and cream ice cream monster truck with large oversized wheels and a big soft white whip on top with a cherry.
Dragon Ice monster truck, a compact monster truck with a blue dragon body design with scales and teeth and spikes and big wheels. There are colourful logo stickers on the black undercarriage. It is doing a small jump over a very muddy ramp in a stadium filled with people in the background.

HUGE

I’ve been researching bodybuilder poses, the reasons for them and the way they accentuate the muscle definition. Scrolling through Google images at these magazine covers, there are obvious themes that arise. The women are very rarely as muscly as the men, they are often used as props to the central male figure or they are overtly feminised and sexualised in bikinis with big flowing hair. I couldn’t find any magazine covers with any variation of this apart from Renee Campbell, a bodybuilder who is trying to challenge the standard look. There weren’t any covers of her but the photos from an article on CNN definitely had a different energy and aesthetic.

The positions range from intimidating to comical, one of my favourites is the one where they look like they’re pushing an invisible shopping trolley. When I look at a lot of these images and bodies all at once, shiny, bulging, smiling, angry, tanned, flexed bodies, it starts to make me feel weird, they remind me of rotisserie chickens just spinning on repeat. But they are also somehow very fascinating and impressive.

The limitations of mobility that pushing your body to this size causes makes me wonder if they are really hyperable or if they are just a visual symbol of hyperability.

Renee Campbell via CNN

Lulikenstein’s Mascot Monster Bodies

A faint grass background with a creature diving in the foreground, their body made up of several mascot limbs, a yellow angry looking cartoonesque sunburst face, a raised right arm or wing of an eagle mascot, brown with black feather and a white gloved hand, the left arm, also raised, is a green glistening wrist and hand poking out of a brown long sleeve, the face melts down into the body, grey fur with a white fur belly oval, the left leg has blue shorts with a small logo, a yellow leg, white sports socks and black and a red puffy mascot nike trainer, the right is a thick beige fur trunk with a huge bright blue hoof. The legs are bent and arched backwards.

This is an experiment into creating my own hybrid Frankenstein mascot monster bodies in footy diving positions. I would love to do this with irl second hand mascot bodies one day for an installation, taking a few apart and sewing bits back together, so it’s cool to be able to do some digital mock-ups and think about how I can use them sculpturally in an online exhibition to accompany the video work. I’m thinking about some t-shirts one day maybe too. I’m looking forward to developing this idea and creating more of these.

This was created with A LOT of help from Hang Linton and their stellar photoshop skills.

Body Builder Vol II – Costume

With a mid noughties, year 9, gelled up hair style and matrix like glasses, we are getting roared at by a man in a muscle suit and tight leather trousers. His hands are clenched in fists at waist height, knuckles facing each other so the bulging suit and rounded arms create a strange ring of meat.

I have been working with fashion designer, Max Allen, to literally build a body. You can see the final product in my studio. I am going to use this costume for a choreographic film experiment, superimposing this performative figure onto my own physical body. Here is some of our inspo:

Like a super hero, fists on waist and chest puffed out, stands Big Daddy. Thick thighs shoot from calf high black boots. A white leotard has Big Daddy written in block capitals. They are wearing a union jack crop top that is split down the middle, exposing the deep circular neck of the leotard. Big Daddy has an emotionless face, rather large and shiny chin while sporting icy white hair.
On top of a green background is a person in a red hoodie and white bib. We can only see their chest, no hands, no head. They are wearing a white bib which saying 'Doping Control' in bold, black all caps.
A comic book image. On top of a glowing red background, we are shown the transformation process of Jennifer Walters into She-Hulk. From grey to green, busting and shredding from her normal clothes, She-Hulk dominates the image with her wide stance, big hair, big muscles, big tits and tiny white and blue leotard.
A person with long dark hair and black socks stands there with a wide grin and one fist raised like they're about to pump it in a 'YES' type celebration. This person is wearing a comically large inflatable muscle suit with beige skin, dark brown muscle contours and a red bikini.
Macho Man Randy Savage in all his might, standing on stage beneath a spotlight. Wearing a yellow cowboy hat covered in red stars with a big sparkly 'M' on the front, he is wearing 80's shutter shades, has long brunette hair and a big fluffy beard. Randy stands legs wide and arms flexed to create the shape of a very thick pitchfork. He is wearing a black jumpsuit covered in tassels. One half red, the other half yellow. Randy also has tassels tied around his arms to emphasise his already bulging biceps.
A yellow cycling jersey with red shoulder sections. White, red and blue sponsorship logos litter the jersey to a landfill like state.
A bright and colourful, candy bar like, collection of football scarves from across the world. They run vertically up the image with all text turned 90 degrees clockwise also.

Body Boards

A mood board of many rectangular images that have either been cut from magazines or printed at home on a computer, arranged and put inside a clip frame. They include muscly older people doing a variety of fitness activities including yoga, body building, swimming and running. Many of them are posed with little clothing on to present their physique. The images have been marked with numbers in a black felt pen, these are the ages of the people shown in the pictures which range from 58 to 100 years old. Some of the images contain text, inspirational quotes from the people in the pictures and information about them, which is mostly not big or clear enough to read. Some quotes that are visible say, 'Don't regret growing older. It's a privilege denied to many' and 'Know Limitations. Then Defy Them.'

Growing up, my Mum, like my previously mentioned biological Dad, was also into body building and fitness in general.

For as long as I can remember she has kept mood boards of desirable body types and ideas of what is ‘healthy’ that she aspires to, around the house. These are the current ones which have been sat in her kitchen for the past couple of years which are very age focused. They used to only feature body builders when I was younger but more recently yogis, swimmers and runners have joined her fitness inspo crew as her own interests have diversified.

When I mentioned the body boards in passing to a disabled friend of mine a couple of years ago, they asked me what it was like to be around these images when you’re not physically able to ever attain one of these bodies. I was so used to them being around, posing next to the fridge, gleaming on the wall of whichever corner of the house she’d displayed her weights, that I had never really thought about it. I still don’t really know what I think about it now. I mean, I don’t tend to judge how other people want to decorate their houses or what they do to make themselves feel good.

A mood board of many rectangular images that have either been cut from magazines or printed at home on a computer, arranged and put inside a clip frame. They include muscly older people doing a variety of fitness activities including yoga, body building, swimming and running. Many of them are posed with little clothing on to present their physique. Some of the images contain text, inspirational quotes from the people in the pictures and information about them, which is mostly not big or clear enough to read. Some quotes that are visible say, 'Don't regret growing older. It's a privilege denied to many' and 'Know Limitations. Then Defy Them' and 'Age Does Not Hold You Back'.

I may not be able to attain one of these bodies but my body is pushed to it’s limits in a different way. It’s not by choice and the experience may not appear how you might expect it to. I’m no athlete, training to impress you with a record breaking, gold medal, fastest time, personal best PERFORMANCE. I don’t want to be anyone’s inspiration for managing to get through the day either. 

I might start making mood boards of people just lying down, looking really comfortable watching telly and put them up around my house. It’s one of the only physical states I desire. (Which by the way, are very hard images to find because everyone looks stiff and staged). The other physical states I desire are only attainable through different forms of visualisation; alien, jelly creature, plant, cyborg, insect, sea creature, goat, mascot and floating air molecule. This is what I use to escape the pain of my physical form. I keep digital collections of images of these bodies, which I guess is a similar practice to my Mum’s boards. 

We all do what we’ve gotta do.

Ing-ger-lund

A selfie I took this morning wearing my England  tshirt. The perspective is  from eyebrows to stomach. My face is tired and expressionless and my eyes a bit watery because my baby has been waking me every hour during the night for a week. My hair is unsurprisingly messy and unwashed, hanging wavy at shoulder length. I have blue eyes and a small piercing above my top lip. The shirt is white and a cheap almost see through material, the sleeves are capped and my arms are showing slightly with some messy black outline tattoos, a smiling alien on the right and a brain on the left. On the chest of the tshirt it says 'ENGLAND' in red capitalised slim bold letters with silver glitter outline. The lettering is backwards because the phone has mirrored the image. On the left of the lettering is a red rose with a green stalk and leaves. Underneath is some silver glitter lettering in what looks like Japanese letters. I don't think it's a translation of ENgland because I looked it up and it looked different so I have no idea what it says.
My tshirt.. does anyone know what it says underneath?

I found this tshirt for two quid from a shop round the corner from my house. I’m not really into patriotism but I’m feelin pretty underwhelmed by the games I’ve seen so far and I want to try and get into the spirit while watching at home. Let’s hope tonight’s game is a little more exciting!

Definition of Silence

The page from [reading] [sounds] I posted earlier last week produced a question that has been pondering on my mind- what word could be used to represent silence in the subtitle?

I wanted to share the responses I have collected from people during my work in progress show during my MA year 2017. I had a sketchbook laid out in front of the audience asking the question “WHAT IS SILENCE?”

The answers I received were all different and made me realise that silence can be represented in a poetic and abstract way.

Below is the digital collation of selected answers from the sketchbook.

Colourful short handwritten words on white background. From top to bottom order, writings say: "ignore...", "silence is when you truly listen" "PEACE", "Silence is comfort", "Stillness", "silence ≠ empty", "tranquility", "silence is when nothing moves", "very little sound", "silence is recuperative & engaging", "no sounds, only self", "EMPTY ROOM","seeing","silence is when you & ur date don't know what to talk about", "silence is my sexual life","BREAK FROM THE OUTSIDE NOISE", "Nothing, absence of sound", "harmony","silence is movement of one moment to the next","another way of communication","Absence","The absence of interference","INTERNAL SOUNDS/MOTION","The space between.... A moment of thought....","listening to other things","I love silence". There is little diagram on upper right side- which has circle drawing with little x inside. x has a little line drawing right below and the word below the line says SILENCE.
Collection of responses to the question “What is Silence?”

[reading] [sounds] by Sean Zdenek pg183

Page 183 of the book [reading] [sounds] by Sean Zdenek - title of chapter "Captioned Silences and Ambient Sounds" Below the title, the paragraph starts with "As counterintuitive as it may sound, silence sometimes needs to be closed captioned. Captioners not only inscribe sounds in writing but must also account for our assumptions about the nature, production, and reception of sounds. One of our most basic assumption is hat sounds are either discrete (with a clear beginning and end) or sustained (continuous). Sustained sounds, including sounds that are captioned as continuous or repeating (e.g., using the present participle verb+ing, as in [phone ringing]) may need to be identified in the captions as stopped or terminated if it's not clear from the visual context. That is, if we can't see the phone being answered or the ring being turned off, the captioner may need to mark the termination of the ringing sound. We also assume as moviegoers that the world is never technically silent. Ambient noise provides context. True silence is rare on the screen. In the real world beyond the screen, the same assumption holds.Sound waves envelop hearing viewers even in "silence." The total absence of sound can only be achieved on Earth artificially in an anechoic chamber, a room designed to block out exterior noise and absorb interior sound waves. Designed to test product noise levels (and not human tolerance levels), the chamber reportedly causes hallucinations and severe disorientation in hearing visitors who spend even a little time in one (Davies 2012):"
Page 183 from [reading] [sounds] by Sean Zdenek

This chapter of the book starts with the sentence “As counterintuitive as it may sound, silence sometimes needs to be closed captioned.” I couldn’t agree more with this line because it is so easy for captioners to oversee the importance of including silence/ambient sound and the difference this makes for viewers to understand the story better. There have been several occasions where I could hear something happening on TV (ambient sound in films that adds to the atmosphere/scene) but no word appears in the subtitle section to give me an answer to my curiosity.

Can silence be captioned? How can one interpret silence into words?

A large proportion of the U.K. television audience relies on subtitles. The BBC’s audience research team has run two audience surveys for us over the past two years. Each used a representative sample of around 5000 participants, who were questioned on that day’s viewing. The responses indicate that about 10% of the audience use subtitles on any one day and around 6% use them for most of their viewing. This equates to an audience of around 4.5 million people in the U.K., of which over 2.5 million use them most or all of the time. Importantly, not all subtitle users have hearing difficulties, some are watching with the sound turned off and others use them to support their comprehension of the program, while around a quarter of people with hearing difficulties watch television without subtitles.” (from the article published in 2017 titled Understanding the diverse needs of subtitle users in a rapidly evolving media landscape)

It is important to note that not everyone that uses subtitles identifies as d/Deaf or hard of hearing. In my recent research, I found an article written in 2006 discussing subtitles used by 6 million people with so-called “perfect” hearing. In the comments section, some individuals have shared why they enjoy using subtitles, their answers included that of providing a distraction for kids, learning English, or being able to multi-task etc. The link to the article is here.

Can subtitle capture emotions on screen? How does reading subtitle enhance the experience of film watching? When you read the subtitle, what kind of tone do you read in?

Tweety Bird

A meme with a black background with transparent red hearts, overlaid is an image of tweety bird, a small cartoon yellow bird from Looney Tunes. They are wearing a red bandana, a white vest, gold necklace and baggy blue jeans with black and white sneakers. Their facial expression and slouched body gives the impression that they are confident. Their left arm is on their hip and their right hand holds up a smoking gun. At the top of the image is bold capitalised shiny text with a white background that says 'OK BOTCH CALL THE COPS'. At the bottom of the image is capitalised fire flame writing that says 'I'LL HAVE SEX WITH THEM'.
Tweety Call the Cops Meme

Tweety Bird, whose gender was intentionally ambiguous in the original Looney Tunes cartoons, is one of the first and only examples of a non-binary character in mainstream media that I really relate to. I even have them tattooed on my arm with the word ‘LADETTE’ (see below).

I love how Tweety’s persona has continued to develop outside of the cartoon narrative in memes, one of my favourite being the one above, although I can’t find the original creator to credit them. Does anyone know? 

A close up image of the side of my arm. On it is a medium sized tattoo of Tweety Bird, a cartoon bird from Looney Tunes. It is a black outline tattoo. Tweety is wearing a hoody and large trainers, in their left hand they are holding a tinny and in their right hand a smoking cigarette. They are winking their left eye. Over the top of their hooded head it says 'LADETTE' in old school tattoo style writing.
Tweety Ladette Tattoo

In the cartoon, Tweety survives constant harassment and attacks from Sylvester the cat, all while being a physically small and sometimes unassuming creature, although a crafty and clever side is suggested. Proof that it takes more than hyperable physiques to survive the energy vampires of this world. Looney Tunes played with the ambiguity and fluidity of gender with many of their characters and it was never targeted at a specific gender audience which I think is unusual for a lot of children’s mainstream entertainment.

I made a little Tweety meme myself below using some of the vast collection of images I have of unofficial Tweety costumes.

A meme with a grid presenting nine different unofficial tweety costumes. At the top it says 'which tweety are you today?' and  I would describe the costumes as follows:
1. Floating walking tweety with an elongated head and smiley face.
2. A flat faced tweety with a surprised look and hands raised.
3. a box head tweety
4. A squishy faced side eyes tweety.
5. A creepy slightly angry tweety with a comb over.
6. A cute bulbus unassuming tweety looking down like they are a bit embarrassed.
7. an intense but also somehow expressionless tweety waving one hand.
8 a smiley tweety with a long thick neck.
9. a man with a yellow onesie on and the hood is a bulbus slightly angry looking tweety head ontop of his head. He has his hands on his hips.
Tweety Meme

Our Prop Mud by Joseph Noonan-Ganley

Around ten rugby players during a game, all covered in mud so that their kits colours are no longer visible. On the right hand side of the image, the beginning of a scrum is occurring with some players bent forward and locking limbs, on the left side players lean towards the scrum, some look as though they are reaching in. It is a mess and tangle of muddy limbs in a field.
Muddy rugby players on a pitch via hartpury.ac.uk

This text was suggested to me by Linda Stupart, who is also currently doing a residency with Vital Capacities at the moment. It’s written by Joseph Noonan-Ganley and it is titled, ‘Our Prop Mud’ and you can read it in full here. It’s about rugby and mud and gay feelings. I could really relate to these contemplations on sports and queerness and the consumption of bodies and their public personas. 

Here is an excerpt that I really like,

‘The scene that stopped me was the Cardiff Park Arms rugby match from 1970, transformed by the unrelenting appearance of mud. Ironically, mud allowed me to see clearer. The scene clarified and exposed some of what I was interested in in Gareth Thomas. Mud’s addition messed up rugby’s conventional surface and allowed a view onto the base material composition of the game: people’s bodies in relation. These kinds of political derivatives seem far more generative and uncertain than Gareth Thomas’s recycled admissions of guilt and fault.’

Image Description: Watershed

 Image Description: Watershed 

Linda Stupart Watershed 2020, video, 11:06 

Image Description by Aubree Penney 

Image Description 

Clad in black galoshes, a person wades into a small, murky river, past an abandoned shopping cart that lies in the water nearby. The person’s outfit consists of pink, yellow, baby blue, and lavender tie-dyed pieces and bits of pink pastel plastic. The arraignment drips behind them, dragging the ground, covering their head like a hood in a cheerily chaotic hodgepodge of pastel bits and pieces. Bright yellow tie-dyed gloves are on their hands. Lush greenery surrounds one side of the river, with tangles of roots emerging near the waterline. 

They walk away from the camera towards a brick bridge with two arches, circles of water rippling out from their feet with each step. 

Splashes of water accompany each of the figure’s steps, as the chitterings of birds mix with the rush of passing traffic and the light whisper of wind. 

A warm, welcoming voice off-screen layers over the background noises of the river: 

Ok, so, everyone close your eyes. Ok. So, now that your eyes are closed I want you to really think about the spit that’s in your mouth. So like everyone has spit in their mouth. Just be really aware of that spit in your mouth. 

Ok, so you’ve got the spit, it’s there, it’s in your mouth. Now what I want you to do is imagine that there’s a cup in front of you. You’ve got a cup, it’s empty, maybe it has some water in it. It’s in front of you. Now, I want you to think and imagine spitting that spit out into the cup in front of you. Ok. Cool. Now that you’ve done that, I want you to pick that cup up and drink that spit back into your mouth again. 

The camera dips into the water, revealing a tumult of sticks and dirt, decomposing leaves, and a white strand. 

The camera shifts angles, revealing the figure emerging from beneath the brick bridge. A stone wall with trails of ivy meets the bridge at its top, containing the river, with a wealth of greenery emerging from the damp land at the river’s far edge, piles of stones and debris on the bank nearest the camera. The river narrows to only a few meters’ wide. 

On screen text beneath the figure reads: The long arm of the law was in full evidence when police were called to reports of a human limb floating in a Birmingham river. 

Splashes accompany the slow, steady movement of the figure in the water as the birds continue to sing. 

On screen text beneath the figure reads: And the officers went further out on a limb after they struggled to get out of the river – providing amusement to those watching the operation to retrieve the wayward body part. 

The voice off-screen clears its throat, which echoes slightly, before beginning to sing Black Sabbath’s “Electric Funeral.” The pace is slow, lingering, sung in a rich middle range and lending a haunting air. The song clings to your skin, subtle but insistent. The sounds of the riverbank continue in the background, the twittering of birds lightly piercing the darkness of the sung melody. 

The voice sings: 

Ba, ba da nuh nuh, duh nuh nuh, duh nuh nuh, ba ba 

The gurgling of the river replaces the sound of birds as the camera dips into the water. 

The camera plunges and twists beneath the water, revealing dirt and detritus in the grayish water and offering momentary glimpses of the figure’s pastel robes, stirring bubbles beneath the water and a blue sky above streaked with white clouds. 

Our view shifts back to the figure, slowly proceeding along the river. A black and white image of an arm layers over the left side of the image. The arm is wrapped in something at the elbow, the skin looking mottled and patchy. The hand is outlined in yellow, raising it against the screen. Behind the picture of the hand is a vertical video hovering over a container of orange goop with bits pressed into it. The video of the orange goop disappears. In the center, beneath the black and white hand appears the image of a blue-gloved hand holding a white, stuffed glove with blood on its fingertips in front of a river with rocky banks and lots of trees around it. 

The figure approaches a small waterfall. 

The camera shifts to the top of the waterfall. The black-and-white hand image disappears, shortly followed by the disappearance of the image with the stuffed glove. 

The figure clambers over the falls and stands at the top, revealing in their hand a Y-shaped wooden diving rod, with orange string and a small camera at the top. A tattoo peeks out just beneath their right elbow. 

The voice continues to sing: 

Reflex in the sky-y warn you you’re gonna di-ie 

Storm coming, you better hi-ide from the atomic ti-ide 

Flashes in the sky-y turns houses into sti-ies 

Turns people into cla-ay, radiation mines deca-ayyy 

The voice emulates a guitar interlude, the sound becoming increasingly sharper and more insistent: 

Dee da na now, de duh na now, do do duh na now, dee dee nuh nee, duh duh da now, dee dee nuh nee, 

Bow bow buh na now, duh nuh nee 

Robot minds of robot sla-aves 

Lead them to atomic ra-age 

Plastic flowers, melting sun 

Fading moon falls apart 

Dying world of radiation 

Victims of mad frustration 

Burning global oxy’n fire 

Like electric funeral pyre 

The figure continues their journey, the waterfall now behind them. They reach down and grab a long, thin branch, untangling it from their clothes. They toss it behind them, the branch eliciting a small spray as it smacks the water. 

A light splash joins the sound of the figure wading as they throw the stick in the water. 

Duh da na now, de nuh na nee, ba ba da nuh, dee nuh na nee 

Ba bow duh na now, nuh nuh na 

The figure progresses between two piles of sticks in the river, speckled with castoff bottles and other pieces of rubbish. 

The voice transitions to the rhythmic, airy flicking sound of a tongue flicking the top teeth, steady as the second hand on a clock. The rhythm continues, now comprised of gentle, insistent tapping sounds that have the steady rhythm and assuredness of a warm rain on skin. 

The camera dips beneath the water, revealing murkiness and the pinks of the figure’s robes once more as well as the verdant edges of the bank. 

As the camera dips under, the gurgling rushes of the river return. 

An inset box, framed now by murkiness, reveals the figure navigating under and around a low canopy of branches that are over the river. A fingertip briefly slips in front of the camera lens. 

The high-pitched bird songs return as the tapping fades. 

The background image shifts to the figure wading towards the camera. In the foregrounded image, the figure trips on a branch and slowly falls into the water. They slowly sit up and begin to remove their mask. 

A deep, startled exhale as a branch snaps, followed by a slow splash. 

The airy rhythm returns, a ticking made of breath, tongue, and teeth, quickly switching to the drumming of flesh against a surface. The drumming grows louder, softens, and then abruptly halts. 

The image cuts to a skinned knee with blood dripping down, leaving rust colored trails behind on the pink skin, the damp pink, yellow, and light blue fabric hanging about the hurt leg. The camera twists, revealing a tattoo beneath the skinned knee, now black lines merging with light pink streaks of blood as the blood drips past the tattoo and down into the rainboot. 

A soft voice, the slight kiss of breeze brushing past is audible around them: 

Thank you 

All sound ceases. 

The camera pauses on the figure’s head, covered in a gray and pink floral mask with huge half-sphere eye pieces of clear plastic. Bits of lavender and laminated fronds are revealed to be part of the ensemble. The figure’s right hand wears a yellow tie-dyed glove and holds the diving rod aloft. Bits of orange yellow, white, and pink string adorn it, mixing with wires and buttons for technology and a laminated paper that reads “Deriving from the Latin word vulnus [wound], vulnerability expresses the capacity to be wounded and suffer. As bodily, social, and affective beings, we all have the capacity to be vulnerable to one another and to conditions of inequality, discrimination, exploitation, or violence, as well to the natural environment. The next sentence is crossed out. 

The sloshes of the water and bird songs return. 

The figure proceeds onward down the dirt bank beneath an organically formed archway of trees and bushes. Tiny, lacy white flowers dot the ground to either side of the dirt path. 

The off-camera voice speaks: 

Scum on the top of the river, skin on the top of milk, skin on the top of the river, scum on the top of milk. The River Cole is constantly threatening to flood like I am, like we are. 

[a deep breath] 

Superimposed on the screen is a collaged tangle of daisies, leaves, yellow and green slivers, a cacophony of soft angles and cheery natural hues. Behind the collage, the figure steps back into the river and proceeds on their journey, greenery visible on both sides of the water. 

The limb, the Cole’s River limbs flailing upstream towards her mouth and her teeth. When you drink a glass of water you also drink its ghosts. When you piss in the mouth of the river, your wastes embrace her pasts. 

The image of the blue-gloved hand holding the stuffed white-gloved hand in front of the river is superimposed over the collage. 

Do keep body movements minimal. Do move and gesture slowly and naturally. 

The superimposed images disappear, giving a clear view of the figure wading in the river, their divining rod in their right hand. 

Do maintain eye contact by looking straight in the camera. 

The collage of leaves and daisies and ephemera and the image of the blue-gloved hand holding the stuffed white glove in front of the river are superimposed over the figure’s journey again. 

Bodies and the law are diametrically opposed. And the power of the police and/or men comes from somewhere else from flesh or bone or viscera, rather from unwoundedness, calcifications, non-porous materials. 

The collage disappears. The superimposed image of the stuffed white glove shifts to a video showing reflection on the water’s surface and then scum at the bottom of the river, a glimpse of the divining rod, then more brown debris and dirt beneath the water. 

The virus sits on these materials but does not penetrate them. Rather, she waits. Scum on the top of the river, skin on the top of milk, as the river flows, it picks up sediment from the riverbed, eroding banks and debris in the water. The river mouth is where much of this gravel, sand, silt, and clay is deposited. 

The superimposed video disappears, leaving only the figure in the river. 

The haunting song interjects: 

Turns people into cla-ay. 

On-screen text at the top of the page, in white text atop an image of river water: the police hate water because it does not obey the law 

Immediately the singer transitions back to speech: 

The police hate water because it does not obey the law and because they cannot swallow or incorporate her. 

The on-screen text disappears. A black and white image of a right hand, marked with red bits and globs of ooze, a bit of red flakiness at the center, appears in the bottom right corner. The hand is surrounded by a thick yellow line. 

Kill the cop in your head to lose your tongue and exit language, swim in the blue lagoon now dyed black, let algae stick to you and stop holding hands. 

The image of the oozing hand disappears. The figure has almost reached the limits of visibility for the camera and glances back quickly, then proceeds onward. 

Cling to the viscera in your head, kill the cop in your high-wage, high-skill, high-productivity economy. 

The Prime Minister says he does not care if you die, but that is because he does not understand that the dead are still a threat to him and to the law. When you drink a glass of water you also drink its ghosts. When you piss in the mouth of a river you also come in her pasts. 

A path of spaced stones spans from one bank to the other, forming a walking path. A huge, decaying log sits to the right. Water flows between each stone, forming tiny waterfalls as the water changes levels by a few feet. The camera gets closer and closer, revealing moss on the stones of the path and the foam at the bottom of the miniature waterfalls, and begins to cross the river. 

The water rushes in the background, a gentle but ceaseless torrent of sound. 

The haunting song interjects, gaining speed and urgency: 

Rivers turn to mud, eyes melt into blood 

A wobbling clip of tan eggshells on the dark riverbed is superimposed atop the pathway of stone and waterfalls. 

The mouth of my mouth and the spit of the river. 

The camera swivels at the center of the river, revealing the figure slowly proceeding towards us, flanked on either side by tall trees and lush tangles of small white flowers. Birds dart across the river, making ripples as they touch down, and a huge limb lies in the midst of the water. 

I am meters away from you and in the river holding my breath and still sucking up your sediments discharging foam and teeth. 

The video of the bloody knee, surrounded by pastel swaths of the figure’s attire, is superimposed atop the river scene, framing the knee with greenery and rippling waters. 

Foam on the water, sign of life and death. 

The virus and the river water slither down policemen’s teeth or cheek, resides there. The mouth becomes the source, becomes the rapid and the edge. 

The superimposed image disappears. 

You find the bones of children sometimes, soft hands on necks or weeds tangled between toes and mud and stinking flesh. Amniotic fluid often spills before it breaks, and sometimes fishes also die, she said, as eggs come tumbling onto scales and gills and mammalian hair on legs. 

A video of the figure kneeling in the water, holding their masked head with their left hand and dipping their divining rod into the river with their right. A white stuffed glove is visible next to the rod. The figure slowly moves the rod in the river, its strands of fabric and ephemera floating, shifting with the motion of the rod and the current. 

Eggs are always a disaster or a triumph, like the river and your viscera, or the virus and the sea. 

The superimposed image disappears. The figure uses the rod for stability as they continue towards us, navigating around the branch in the midst of water. 

Do keep minimal straight body naturally across the path to keep the other and the virus safely out and maintain body and maintain eye appeal to the warm contact camera contact nature keep slowly looking straight into the body. 

The haunting singing emerges from the background, so soft as to be nearly indecipherable. It hovers in the back of the mind of the video. It sings: 

And so in the sky shines the electric eye 

Supernatural king takes earth under his wi-ing 

The speaking voice off camera continues, edges of phrases and sentences blurring and piling upon each other in a near breathless torrent of words: 

There caught in the elbows of fallen trees are curving mounds of white foam. Police are called about a water in the body and a body in the water or the river found dead across the edge or bursting skin cells multiplicities and masks and balls at the end of your arms at the end of the ball at the end of nothing. Rehabilitation of the riverbanks are getting better, but what if we never get better or go freckles forward, but what if we never get better or go forward but circle around rather in and out. 

The water grows deeper as the figure nears the camera. The figure’s steps become more tenuous, deliberate as the water reaches their thighs. They sink down with the divining rod, the water level up to their chest. 

The volume of the song in the background swells. It progresses still at a slow, haunting pace, but feels bolder, more confident, less content to linger: 

Heaven’s gold chorus sings 

Hell’s flap their wi-ings 

Evil souls fall to hell 

And they’re trapped in burning cell 

Da na now, da da na now. Doo duh da na now, da na na now. Da na now, da na na. Duh nuh nuh, Buh buh na na, 

The figure leans back, immersing themselves entirely. The screen goes black. 

The sound of rushing water in the background abruptly ceases, leaving only the singing voice to continue with its interpretations of Black Sabbath’s guitar. 

A white text box appears on the black screen. It reads: 

PART 1 

Shot on location in the River Cole (Sparkhill – Hall Green) 

Filming by Tom Dillon 

Song by Black Sabbath 

A beat picks up, both in time to the rhythm of the syllables being sung, recalcitrantly deviating at others. 

Doo doo do-do, doo doo do-o 

Buh buh buh, buh buh-a 

Buh buh na na 

Duh Duh duh now 

Buh buh buh, buh buh-a 

The white textbox disappears, leaving only a black screen. 

The beat increases in speed, becoming a frantic heartbeat for a few seconds before disappearing entirely. 

The song continues softly: 

Buh-a. Duh na. Duh na. 

Barely audibly, the voice concludes, still on pitch and beat with its song, leaving us with a gentle, hovering syllable: 

Mmm