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Bluse

Bluse from LEVEL 5 on Vimeo.

Vancouver-based video artist Paolo Pennuti and photographer Elisa Ferrari collaborated on this mesmerizing film with music by Kristen Roos. Absolutely stunning; remember to expand it to full-screen.

Pennuti and Ferrari are both graduates of the Masters in Media Arts at Emily Carr University of Art + Design in Vancouver where earlier they collaborated for a BFA show on the piece pictured below. Pennuti works primarily with video, and some examples of his work can be found on his Vimeo page. They have a documentary-style to them, sometimes including narrations and using sound as a particular focus. From a blurb at the 2012 New Forms Festival:

His works are the result of physical and theoretical journeys that explore interstitial spaces where apparently nothing is happening but residues of experiences are deposited.

Watching Bluse is a rather terrifying and beautiful piece of film. The camera hovers at the waterline, the river or lake lapping up over the lens as the light progressively dims and heavy weather rolls in. The music is intense and distorted, adding a foreboding effect that can't be shrugged off, but all the while the perspective, just at the surface, is maintained, as if trying to keep afloat, trying to keep one's head above water in uncertain circumstances that are certainly changing.

The imagery is closely related to Ferrari's crisp, atmospheric landscape photography, and can be seen in part of her project The Sami Way.

Pennuti and Ferrari have collaborated on other work, such as 32 Notes on T (above), a 3-channel video installation which used aerial footage from a search for a missing Vancouver solo hiker which was put online so that people could help in the search.

What I love about Ferrari and Pennuti's work is, firstly, the landscape and the narrative, whether it's read aloud or implied in the images and sound. Bluse caught my attention right away as within a couple of minutes I began to feel a little uneasy. It reminded me of being out in the wilderness, knowing that no one might know where to find you if you for some reason became stuck out there. In the daytime, in clear weather, the rough terrain of the mountains might be enjoyable and inviting, but if the weather turns and the light goes, it becomes something else entirely. As this film's atmosphere begins to darken, it plays on that slight tingle of fear that creeps up on you and begins to build when you find yourself most alone.

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