Visual Voices and Visiting Filmmakers Series present: Mendi and Keith Obadike with The Sun

Thursday, March 28, 2024 4:45 PM to 6:30 PM EDT
Johnson Center, Cinema


Join us for a screening of The Sun, followed by a conversation with the filmmakers, Mendi and Keith Obadike.

Mendi and Keith are artists, composers, and writers. Their works sit at the intersection of art, music, and language and draw upon histories of experimental media art and performance. Their early collaborative works have been pioneering pieces for the Internet.

See their website, BlackSoundArt, here

This event will be held in Johnson Center Cinema on the GMU Fairfax campus, and via Zoom. RSVP here, required for Zoom link.

The Sun is a 42-minute music and film work. It is made up of voice, analog synth, harmonium, and bell plate. The piece uses pulsing images of light on film and Akhenaten’s Hymn to the Aten structural guide. Made during the summer of 2020 protests, the work is bookended by the Igbo proverb, "The sun will shine on those who stand before it shines on those who kneel under them.” It has been presented as a two-channel audio and quadraphonic audio.

A note from the filmmakers: 

"In our practice we often think about how listening alters our sense of time. When listening, a repeating pulse can cause us to lose our grip on the passage of time. It can lull us, taking us out of time, or a sudden crash can awaken us to the moment. A musician may experience a moment differently because of how one divides time or pulses. 

"This time-work is most evident with drummers. The great drummer JT Lewis, who plays with us on The Sun, seems to be able to occupy multiple time domains at once. One of rhythm’s gifts is its ability to reorient us in relation to time and space. Listening also engages the index of our memories. One may be pulled into the past when listening to an old melody or one may be pushed into the future by new and inspiring sounds. That internal place where our favorite refrains live is the infinite timezone of the imagination.

"With The Sun, we wanted to make a musical film about the oldest metronome (the sun) and all that happens under this star. In this piece we are thinking about the sun as a pulse and a guide across time. During the screening, we invite you to meditate on the constancy of the sun."

Our screening will be followed by a Q&A with Mendi and Keith. 

This event is presented by Visual Voices; Mason Exhibitions, Visiting Filmmakers Series; College of Visual and Performing Arts; Film at Mason; GMU School of Art: and Inclusive Collaborative Arts at Mason (ICAM). 

#VisualVoices #VisitingFilmmakersSeries #FilmAtMason 

For more information: 

Jeff Kenny, Associate Curator, Mason Exhibitions, George Mason University School of Art,  

Cynthia Fuchs, Director, Visiting Filmmakers Series at Mason; Director, Film at Mason

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