There Will Be Some Who Will Not Fear Even That Void (2013) Tourist with a Typewriter, UK
...Even That Void
Documentary Film Co-Concieved by Saeed Taji Farouky, Sarah Jane Pell, Connor Dickie
We do not want to conquer, we want only to explore. We want simply to enquire. To do this, we map our trajectories across the landscape, to know where we've been and what we leave behind. To know what residue our presence leaves on the environment. And to prove it to others. And to ensure we do not repeat the same mistakes again - the Victorian adventurers who measured and categorised and identified and named as an act of ownership. We, too, will measure and categorise and identify, but for different reasons. To make these measurements, we use those same machines of exploration: an aerial vehicle, an underwater vessel, a sailing ship. With these we measure the conditions of our surroundings and ask "what have we left behind that we did not intend to? Is it inert, innocuous? Is it poisonous?" But even as we measure, our machines influence the environment further. They are measuring themselves. There is a feedback loop. There is reflexivity, the Observer Principle. These minute anomalies must all be measured. But wait. Is this exploration only one-way? Is it not reciprocal? What of the environment's influence on us? Not only the physical, but the psychological, the emotional. How is this measured? How do we map inspiration, awe, joy, intimidation, confusion, fear, loneliness? The Arctic also explores us and she, too, leaves a residue. To this end, the camera is my measuring device. I observe the other crew members exploring and measuring over three strata (air, land and sea). I explore with them. I watch. I react. I question. I participate and agitate. I have no sense of direction or spatial awareness, so I and the camera can be lead only by basic sensory and emotional responses. I challenge my body every day as I train for long-distance running. My work should commit to the same level of intensity, and through that physical challenge I will record also the non-physical. I record the emotional because it is, after all, at the point of extreme physical exertion that my emotional state is at its highest. The Arctic has a physicality. It is defined, above all, by one singular characteristic: cold. To understand the Arctic, we must experience this physicality. Only the body can recognise this nature of the Arctic. The Arctic has also a non-physicality. It is defined, above all, by the absence of everything we recognise and relate to. To understand the Arctic, we must experience this non-physicality. Only the camera can recognise this nature of the Arctic. Saeed Taji Farouky, Sarah-Jane Pell, Connor Dickie - February 2011
There Will Be Some Who Will Not Fear Even That Void is an ecological film for the 21st century.
It is a film about the future of our planet that turns the traditional environmental documentary on its head. Rather than looking at our influence on the environment, ...Even That Void examines the environment's influence on us - emotionally, psychologically and ethically. The film suggests that the limits to exploring and dominating nature are no longer technological, but moral. We now have the technology to "conquer" virtually any part of the planet if we want to - the question is no longer "can we" but "should we"? ...Even That Void was shot over a two and a half week sailing voyage on a tall ship carrying twenty artists around Norway's remote Arctic islands. The documentary chronicles the bizarre, surreal and beautiful work of the artists, living aboard the ship, landing daily and making work in response to the extreme environment and innate poetry of the Arctic landscape. The film's narration is composed of audio interviews with the artists and the Director's reading of his lyrical expedition journals. While the footage is real, the plot - inspired by the other-worldliness of the location and recent events in the Director's own life - is fictional. The Director imagines the artists as a team of specialists sent on a mission in the near future to rebuild the Arctic environment after it has been decimated by global warming. With no master plan, maps or blueprints, each artist recreates the Arctic of his or her own memories, fears, desires and (flawed) expectations. The film also features an experimental soundtrack. Under the musical direction of composer Joe Lewis, each track is written and produced by one of Norway's leading ambient artists, using no sounds other than manipulated and remixed field recordings collected during the expedition by pioneering Australian sound artist Daniel Blinkhorn. The film follows a typical expedition narrative - a ship sets sail on a hazardous mission with a motley crew of experts. Will they succeed in their mission? Will they return safely? But the standard adventure plot becomes a surreal dream-like futurist fantasy. The sense of wonder at the landscape is balanced by darker contemporary concerns: global warming, the Arctic resource race, the political tension of a militarised Arctic and the disappearance of the last great wilderness. Ultimately, the film is a love-letter to the Arctic: obsessive, tumultuous, affectionate, heart-breaking. The demise of the Arctic environment is felt as the death of a family member. The title is taken from a letter Johannes Kepler wrote to Galileo Galilei in 1610, musing on the future of space travel. "Provide ship or sails adapted to the heavenly breezes," Kepler hypothesised, "and there will be some who will not fear even that void."
To date, the film has been screened at: Dark/Light Festival (Dublin, Ireland), April 2014; Northern Character Film & TV Festival (Murmansk, Russia) November 2013; Night / Shift Arts Festival (Kitchener, Canada), November 2013; Nordic Film Days Festival (Lübeck, Germany), October 2013; Nordkapp Film Festival (Honningsvåg, Norway) September 2013; World Premiere: Doxa Film Festival (Vancouver, Canada) May 2013; Tromsø International Film Festival (Norway), January 2013
**Winner Tromsø Palm (Best film from the North)**
The film features the work and contributions of a group of exceptional, international artists, including; Chantal Bilodeau (Canada / US), Daniel Blinkhorn (Australia), David Bowen (US), W. Benjamin Bray (US), Kevin Cooley (US), Connor Dickie (Canada), Rebecca Hunt (UK), Dawn Johnston (Canada), Yva Jung (South Korea), Nam Le (Australia), Cheryl E. Leonard (US), Marcelo Moscheta (Brazil), Ed Osborn (US), Ian Page (US), Sarah Jane Pell (Australia), Leticia Ramos (Brazil), Jessica Segall (US), Paul Segers (Netherlands), Oona Stern (US), Wyn-Lyn Tan (Singapore), Renhui Zhao (Singapore)
Director & Cinematographer: Saeed Taji Farouky; Producer: Marie-Therese Garvey; co-Producer: John Arvid Berger, Jabfilm (Norway); Artistic Advisor: Camille Seaman ; Editor: Gareth Keogh; Editorial Consultant: Jesper Osmund; Conceived by: Connor Dickie, Sarah Jane Pell, Saeed Taji Farouky; Co-writers: Saeed Taji Farouky, Gareth Keogh, Marie-Therese Garvey ; In collaboration with: Anita Doron; Music Supervisor: Joe Lewis; Distributor: DR Sales (Denmark); Broadcasters: NRK (Norway)