listen closer

a text response to the performance Listen Closer  by Suna Imre and Paul Beaumont presented at Cornershop, Winchester on 10th and 11th April 2009

 

shifting between window panes of off squares with pale bars blanched risers these bright verticals and horizontals offer cross-wires to train our view on the moving bodies present grids that cut across our sightlines and beyond, the large mirror grey green greenish gold neo-classical frame dun beige and sand sallow surfaces on which dark and light figures travel

layers of glass reflections image folds and cut against image angles sectioning limbs torsos a curve a sweep and she goes out of sight he passes behind the frame it slices a division out of them and a thin pale element interrupts the gestures often about to be followed through about to generate a response to provoke or to demand a response and then the gesture turns shifts off in another direction tacks veers backs out of a turn reappraising a moment and the follow on going elsewhere

the violence on an edge a cut cut off or redirected removed to another motion alternate aggression curled back and folded in or thrust off to the side and the consequence untoward flattening or slipping out onto another step over another limb leg or arm or hand or neck or

along the pale boards at floor level below the window ledge then onto the sill backs to us a hand reaching across a narrow gap watched and unwatched an apparent unawareness their heads incline the fabric presses to the glass and another side beyond in the mirror smaller and including us excluded still within and without the bounded box their space

a hand against hair an ankle a body lies heavily on another she pushes back presses out he slides away he leans into the curve of her she turns under and carries him across

and we move to view another angle we accept a different set of interruptions nose to the glass we see them closer but lose the windows that grant the view farther back we sense the room in which they move and the gridded glazing that lets onto this but miss them as they step or tilt or run out of sight beyond a frame device

each pane or window or view offers a close-up cut off fragment of montage each sequence affords a possible narrative joint a link the graphic page breaking up and holding together proposing details of a larger and holding these bits in relation in suspense

only the first and last moments having certainty they came in then I saw them enter and they left then and the space is empty now as it was before but not just as it was now with a recollection now with something missing absent the shifts and turns and runs and flings and tilts and falls all adding up to amounting to the fact of their no longer being there and the crossings and returns the lunges and lifts gathered into the realisation of their having been

Mark Leahy