Bangkok Experimental Film Festival (BEFF)
AN ABC OF LOOKING
Curated by May Adadol Ingawanij and Mary Pansanga
Running time: approx 67 mins
The frame is axe-shaped and the color of gold. When they nailed it to the earth two hundred years ago it must have been made of teak and decorated with edible gold leaves. Ah well, Joni Mitchell sang as she was hitting forty, nothing lasts for long. It’s spray paint and fiberboard
they’re patching that thing with now. Right now the blind man at the vanishing point of this perspective is rotting inside his robe, and cataract claws at our parents’ eyeballs. Guess it’s poetic punishment of some sort for the generations that frittered their gifts under His mantra of see no murderer’s evil. The kids would love to leave but globalization tears too big a hole in the pocket, and so they stay. Thank goodness their teachers come from the army of the fatally blind. And so they teach themselves to look. Or maybe they’ve been quietly learning from Uncle Stan. Some of them appear as if out of nowhere with the same infant eyes as his, that pure, rhythmic, unbounded perceptibility. Others imbibe the impish all-seeing potency of the luk krok – the undead ghost-guide-child that waits at the top of the stairs to lead you into the next adventure. Here’s their ABC of looking – the better to see what’s around the corner with, my dear, as the wolf of Little Red Riding Hood might say.
A selection of Thai shorts and videos from the 6th Bangkok Experimental Film Festival: Raiding the Archives.
Lalita, Tanatchai Bandasak
(TH), 2009, 5:00
An experimental video portrait of the Thai actress Lalita Panyopas. Found soap-opera footage is spun and stretched into a haunting study of memory and distance.
Blur Luminous, Taweewit Kijtanasoonthorn
(TH), 2011, 2:19
Gorgeous rhythmic dance of light, color and city ambient sound.
Ghosts in the Classroom, Ukrit Sa-nguanhai
(TH), 2011, 2:19
When the old is dying and the new can’t be born.
Chai wan ni (Now Showing), Krissakorn Thinthupthai
(TH), 2009, 21:00
At the fringes of the nation, the Spectacle has yet to displace the rhythms of the Festival. A sentimental glimpse of the enduring traditions onto which the moving image has been grafted.
Madaeng bo sai, Pasit Punpruksachat
(TH), 1999, 24:00
An early video from a true underground film and sound artist. Paisit takes a discarded strip of ethnographic film and creates a hypnotic dance of illegibility, transparency, concrete noise, primal sound. The synthesized soundtrack and the slow, pulsing pace builds up into a fresh take on the emulsion decays of an old film and nostalgia for the medium.