The impossibility to perform made us adapt. Modify our original intent. Not to be carried away by the decision and will that we want to do a “performance”. Instead, we asked ourselves the question: What forms are offered to us right now? And so, this video essay was created. Not as an escape route or a decoction of the original ideal. But as an option in the middle of the sea of impossibilities.
I believe that every author sometimes experiences certain difficulties when talking about his work, because it is the work itself that speaks, as a diplomat between two worlds; something about itself, about what it is like to live on an island in a foreign country, but also about a place where it once came from. So I’ll let my diplomat, a video, speak for me. For us.
HERONS VECTOR. The long-term researching project of musical poetry, combining sound puppetry, performance and object / physical theatre is for once realized by means of video essay (TAPE 01) while already using the principles and aspects of the planned performance and album. It is the adventure of hearing anchored in the simplicity of everyday life. Two operators, one transmitter, one destiny of a person, stretched between three magnetic tape recorders, examined, dissected.
… I would like to share, with you readers, a few of my notes from thinking about this work, whose vector will paradoxically point a little out and a little in. It will click. And I will speak for myself here, just as one of the authors, although the sources of inspiration – what from whom and how, who said what and what we thought when – are now indistinguishable.
… There was a lot to search for. How to invent a narrative line that would deny itself at the same time? How to let the lyrics speak separately, in contrast to the word it should reflect? How to listen to the choir inside an individual? How to capture not only what we want to show, but also what the things want to show themselves? How to bring sound into the game, as something we do not confront only “frontally”, but from all sides? How instead of creatio work on re-creatio? How to maximize the potential of hallucinatory perceptions in every perception? How to perceive things as they are and as they can be, without undue desire? How to determine what does “witness” mean in terms of perception and vice versa? What is the memory of things? What did we actually do?
There are other forms of response than answering when someone or something asks questions.
Imagine a series of objects exhibited and illuminated like in a gallery. Among the items is a drum, a jackhammer, but also shattered glass and an old Chinese vase. Want to perceive these objects as immobilized, potential sources of sound. Like a situation. Exceed the basic offers of the association, look for unexpected relationships. What would happen if the drum didn’t just “bum bum” but what if you ran your finger over it and found that you heard a child’s laughter? If we first use our memory to imagine, as we say, the sound that the thing “makes” -- what if we now turn the situation upside down and imagine the sound that the thing remembers and we “make”?
I tell myself… that among the works of fine art there are also those that clearly evoke sound.
Bathers at Asnières, Georges Seurat
Evocation… What is evocation…?
If we contrast the world of being, that is, a quiet and peaceful world in which things simply are, with the world of events, the world of movement and conflict, it will show in what respect that peaceful world belongs to the work and how the work itself transcends it to dynamism. When it frees itself on the stage.
If we do not look only for events, but also for happening of perception, we can make the experience itself a catalyst that sets the objects in motion.
My smart head said this to me. But how not to get away from things when I think about them? Closer. Closer to the point.
… This is the origin of another relationship to silence, which is not an ordinary absence of sound, but it is what absorbs sounds to compress it, condense, transform and return to circulation.
Added a smart head. Then a verse came to my mind: in lonely silence the snow covers us
It came on his own, I wasn’t looking for it. Yet it inspired me. We are surrounded by sounds inside out. We are sounds ourselves. And everything in the world has a soul that can be released through sound. The music, in addition to its other and endless roles in life, adds a bit of space to time, said the head. So is it rest and a frantic run at the same time?
I was interested in ruptures. Rubicon. Edges. Cliffs. Black holes. Becoming. The moment of transition. Transformation.
The music salon of our soul, if I borrow the words of the philosopher Leibniz, oscillates and resonates. It is thus an extreme case of the permeability of matter. Metaphorically speaking, it is like water, a slow wave washes our feet cutely, and a tsunami is as hard as a rock.
In the video, you can hear sounds recorded at a specific place at a specific time. Of course. But some recordings were made out-of-court (They came, as did poetry. Walking shouldn’t be underestimated just as a “means of transportation”).
For example, when I had to work in the zoo over the summer as a pavilion guard. At first, the 12-hour standing in one place exhausted me. But this fatigue helped me to calm my smart mind. And the smart mind went for a walk behind her favourite ideas. Weight, the whole centre of the body, dropped. It was grounded. And the ears? The ears listened. The body listened. And the mind returned to it and was fascinated.
Principle: tensioning -- releasing, shrinking -- stretching, compression -- exploding.
On the contrary, decomposing means enlarging.
The same law applies to sound as to the leaves of a tree: no two are the same.
But who ever verified it?
“Our” sound in the sense of meaning; it is formed as organs in the fetus: from something unlike it.
The individual is often confused with an individuation that is in motion.
It could have been different, but it’s like this.
A passion for visibility is not the same as seeing.
The tree is not green. The tree is greening.
The wounded Drummer Boy – Eastman Johnson
I hear a sound that no one else can hear…
…Bare feet walking on plush.
HERONS VECTOR (Luňáková, Macl, Štourač) is an interdisciplinary theatre group / art collective. The activities of its members are not limited to a selected specializations, but range from performance and physical theatre to literary work, publishing and sound design.
Anna Luňáková (*1993)
Studied philosophy at the Faculty of Arts at Charles University in Prague, and currently is a PhD. student engaged in romance literature. So far, she has published two books, the novel Three (2020) and the collection of poems I just lose my name (2020). She also translates from French (Letter to D., 2021) and Portuguese. She creates authorial performances, i.e. Bohemia, performed in 2018 in Paris, Elevation 2018 in Casablanca, Přeslice 2019 in Setúbal or Odposlech 2020 in Malovice. The last mentioned, Odposlech, was created under the newly emerging collective HERONS VECTOR, of which she is a co-founder, together with Jakub Štourač and Ondřej Macl. She is also the co-founder of the open platform Nothing is a problem here, which organizes authorial readings, events and cabaret.