Nouvelles Objets (ish)

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A belated post of a load of fun winter market stock by As The Crow Flies industries… Speaking of industrious – I just went to the Watershed to see the incredible early Russian film ‘Turksib‘ with a live score by Bronnt Industries Kapital.  Absolutely mesmerising and beautiful.  Everything is rendered so clear and pure in black and white; it gives far more space to simply observe and engage with what’s going on.

Gleaning

The Gleaners and I – by Agnes Varda…

An amazing film shown by Bristol Indymedia at the Cube.  It threw up so many thought provoking images…. hands – and how they are us; reflections of ourself that we can look at; the tools we use to interact with the world and use things, objects; touch people and things; gesture and speak without words.  The ways in which people all over interact with waste products – objects left over from the lives and functions of another person or people, objects that take on new meanings when re-appropriated and re-purposed.

To glean: to gather things carefully; to sift out useful remnants of stuff or information.

I like this idea of careful finding – of interpretation through sorting, picking up ends and strands and forming new life or opinions through them.  Its how I used to work at university – gleaning the books I needed by slowly reading the titles of all the spines of the books in all the sections i liked the sound of.  Its how I interact with nature – slowly sifting my way through beaches for shells left by creatures, softened glass and ceramics left by people  and mediated by the sea; hunting through woods and fields for berries and leaves and flowers to eat or dry or just look at.  Its how i prefer to attain things – the rummaging in car boot sales, thrift shops, skips, stuff on the street and finding the things that perfectly dovetail into what you want your life to look like without having to look to corporations to tell you what you needed.  Its how find what I am doing, by stumbling across things, letting connections happen and finding slowly the things that i need or want to do and make time for.  I love to glean – words, poetry, knowledge, artefacts, recipes, images, foods, people, clothes, music: everything gains a certain richness through being a found object – something that others didn’t notice or discarded because they didn’t realise the value or potential.  Perhaps that’s part of the fun, the secret knowledge of having got something that others missed.  Of having found satisfaction in something that had been left by the wayside.  Treasure hunting!  Its second nature to me and beautiful to see a whole film full of people who get by in life through treasure hunting – whether via necessity, ethics or a simple desire for the unusual.  This lady, Agnes Varda has a really true and unique perspective on the world, a magpie collector of ideas, situations and tiny life stories that are happening all around her, and all of us in fact.

snuck out one night. stole the spots off the backs of the fawns.

they are needed to ease troubled minds. – Mariee Sioux on gleaning

key to photos: gleaned fruit; gleaned patterns; house full of gleanings.

and so may begins…

today in Leigh Woods… the beech trees are blessed with the palest lime green or copper pink leaves, screaming out their newness against a carpet of resilient autumn orange.  Knee deep in wild garlic listening to the birds i felt the healing power of the outdoors soothing my bruised soul; not the most momentously cheerful of bank holiday weekends but i’m not going to digress into navel gazing wallow…  Saw pink and red campions, garlic mustard, dog’s mercury, the nascent blue glow of imminent bluebell groves alongside the fairy whiteness of ramsons’ star flowers dominating patches of the woodlands.  photo below of primroses from westonbirt last weekend; an entirely springful day full of primrose and cherry blossom, violets, lesser celandine, speedwell and wood anemones…

Last night i volunteered at the cube cinema for a showing of the Coca-Cola Case -a really inspiring film about the ongoing trial and negotiations of a group of Colombian trade unionists (Sinaltrainal) attempting to bring the despicable giant to book over massive human rights violations and their implication in paramilitary killings of trade unionist leaders and members.  Sadly the young workers for the local bottling plant perceive the union to be the preserve of the old and, reading between the lines, those with less to lose – depressing attitude when they then reveal that they make $1 per hour and work 15 hours each day…

Quite a battle; in the end the trade union members refuse their hard won offer of pots of dirty dollars because of the attached restrictions and clauses that would impede the integrity of their union actions.  The film was mainly an uplifting documentary of the fairly successful struggle of oppressed workers against an unscrupulous corporation but there were 2 highly demoralising moments:  one was watching a bunch of pathetic fat american students wearing sandwich boards proclaiming things like ‘we love coke’, ‘fuck human rights’ (yes, really!!), when activists on campus tried to ban the drink in light of the company’s widespread labour and human rights violations across the globe… oh dear.  The other was witnessing an American court discrediting an extremely hard working human rights lawyer by mentioning that he had a poster of Che Guevara in his office…

Live skype discussion with Ray Rogers followed the film; he has been running the Killer Coke campaign since the mid-noughties so that was interesting.  Still intrigued, as a worker for a labour rights campaign, as to how he and his comrades scrape together the funding to front such a huge and successful campaign.  Mild envy given LBL’s parlous financial state…