In 2010, I started making short videos to explore my interest in light. The possibility of working with a medium that captured, manipulated, and transferred light directly into our bodies was very exciting to me. I appreciate how the poetry animates differently through voiceover over video editing. I began with short videos that were re-interpretations of some of my poems over video footage that I took, like in “An Array Becomes an Organizational Method.” I quickly abandoned this practice and no longer set poetry to video.
In 2011, I collaborated with my friend Jonathan Hamilton to shoot footage in some of the derelict spaces of northern Philadelphia near my home. I was interested in exploring the salp’uri dance form–a dance for exorcism and healing. The meditational aspects of this dance form seemed especially helpful for communicating my poetry into the sky. I’ve written extensively about my interest in the salp’uri form and light in various places. This dance video piece became the first in a trio of works that explore light, landscape, grief through the salp’uri form. Below, you’ll see the full video for the first of this trio, “Winter Salpuri,” and an excerpt from the second piece “Permanent Day.” The third and final piece, “The Duration” is complete and I’m waiting for an exhibition opportunity to show the three videos together in an installation context.
In 2015, I began investigating the relationship between landscape and human intention from a more explicitly ecopoetical approach. The grasslands of eastern Wyoming were a rich terrain that documented human interventions into the landscape through westward expansion, animal husbandry, and ranching. I hope to continue this investigation of grasslands in Central Asian steppe lands in 2021.