The film follows two park rangers at work and on expeditions through the sunlit grasslands of West Greenland. As they talk, they exchange new and old knowledge of the land, for example, how ancient fertile sediment from Greenland is used to fertilize depleted soil abroad, and how microbes have adapted to deal with pollution. In the meantime, the landscape and its inhabitants perform their acts.
What would a visit to the Via Appia park in Rome look like if we considered the crow as guide?
It turns out that Italian Filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini was the first to have formulated an answer to
this question in 1966 with his film Uccellacci e Uccellini, known in English as "Hawks and Sparrows".
In this film, we follow Toto and his son Ninetto on a walk through the Via Appia park. During their
walks they meet a crow who can speak and who plays the role of a "left-wing intellectual".
There are rumours that the crow that Pasolini filmed did not want to cooperate and repeatedly attacked the human protagonists.
This short analogue remake of the film, shows rehearsal recordings of a crow actor playing themselves.
The recordings complement the footage Pasolini recorded in 1966, but instead of imposing a human
ideology and voice on the crow, they present the crow as a non-human guide in the Via Appia park.
Scottish Short Film Award GSFF17 (Glasgow Short Film Festival 2017).
FLOW COUNTRY is a collaboratively written piece of fictocritisism by artist Jasper Coppes and archaeologist Daniel Lee. Based on their earlier cinematographic ventures into a contested site in the far North of Scotland, the book is a reconnaissance of real and imagined sites – taking shape as a liquid land that fluctuates between blanket bog, film emulsion and literary space. The book offers a possible way out of the many ‘transformation-narratives’ that tried to exploit or reform this vast terrain.
Published by Publication Studio Glasgow
Read or order online.
In Flow Country an anonymous narrator investigates a 16mm film as an archaeological record. He wonders to what degree the landscape it depicts influenced the production of the film. While scanning the stark images of a deserted landscape, the idea arises that the 'archaeology of the present' can be a site of production – where ecology and man play equal parts. The role of the archaeologist transforms from being the observer of a disconnected past towards becoming an immersed wonderer, actively creating future historical layers.
Watch online at Rietveld TV.
As part of ‘Pioneers’, an exhibition as a collaboration between the Historisch Centrum Limburg (RHCL), the Provincial House (Ad Himmelreich, curator) and the Van Eyck Academy, Maastricht.
Curator: Krien Clevis.