by Beauchamp Art
This short film features a warped selection of fairy light, shifting, transitioning, in a multi-layered visual dynamic. It stemmed from the same source material as the Faeries photo series (included with the North photos), and the footage was gathered around Christmas (though many of the light are year-round decorations). This was mostly an aesthetic experiment, creating a dream-like aesthetic from the out of focus lights, hence the title Hypnos refers to the personification of sleep in Greek myth. The footage plays forwards and backwards simultaneously at varying speeds, and the shadows were darkened slightly so the lights moved across a matte black background.
The audio was derived from the native sound of the footage, combined with a distorted retrograde inversion of Barber’s Adagio for Strings. Layered with the opening to Hawkins’ Origin of the Universe speech and the Seasonal Suicide section description from Wikipedia; read by two text-to-speech digital voices. This plays on the unearthly, nova-like aesthetic of the shifting lights, juxtaposing this to a melancholic lament on the misrepresent subject of the increasing rates of suicides around the holidays. The video concludes with the background sound of a heartbeat slowly increasing in volume, before all the sound dissipates.
The titles use the same Heiti TV typeface as most of the other video works within this unit, with a slight glow around the letters, to mimic the appearance of the lights. The clip used as the filler for the text was selected and cropped so it began and and ended with black frames, meaning the viewer would not see an overt cut. The piece was not given much contextual consideration (besides that associated with the audio samples and mythological reference), but the outcome seemed fairly cinematic, like some of the other short films I have produced, resembling an opening or dream sequence from a film, though not as extreme as the indulgently psychedelic, drug infused hallucinations of Gaspar Noé’s 2010 film, Enter the Void.
Stills from Hypnos.