SOLITUDE (2018) is a short performative film; a character study of the persona “The Unreliable Narrator”.
Synopsis: The year is unknown but a strange girl wanders rural locations in Canada, all of which are mysteriously uninhabited. Who is she, how did she get here, what is she searching for? This study of character within rural sites presents a view of our world as odd, humorous, nostalgic, lonely and strange.
Inspiration for the films were taken from obsessively listening to Glenn Gould’s Solitude Trilogy, a collection of three-hour long radio documentaries produced for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) between 1967-1977. The documentaries all reflect a theme of being outside this world, each focusing on a specific location of Canada where isolation is found; the locations being the northern arctic Nunavut (The Idea of North), the maritimes Newfoundland and Labrador (The Latecomers), and the Mennonite life in Manitoba (The Quiet in the Land).
In these short films, I channel a persona called “The Unreliable Narrator” where I pursue a journey with no clear purpose or intention, reacting to the sites and objects I find in surprising ways. The films were shot and edited over the course of three months; the locations consisted of the small town of Orangeville, Ontario and the small village of Lanse Au Loup, Labrador. Over ten different sites were used in these areas for the entire film. All footage is performative, there were no re-shoots or practice runs. Specific locations were chosen spontaneously, with careful attention to the overall framing, the objects within the shots and the playful colours within these landscapes. The recurring visuals that appear, such as fences and gates, safety signs and equipment, mountains and piles, industrial forms and vast fields create a visual language that is consistent with my art practice.
Sounds are used throughout in connection to the Glenn Gould documentaries. In The Idea of North the sound of the train can be heard and in Part 1 of SOLITUDE a train sound is used. In The Latecomers the sound of rushing waves can be heard and in Part 2 of SOLITUDE rushing wave sounds are used. In The Quiet in the Land church choirs are heard and in Part 3 of SOLITUDE the sound of the Electric Light Orchestra’s song “The Way Life’s Meant to Be” can be heard. All throughout the films the sound of the whistling wind is heard. In the Glenn Gould documentaries there are voices that overlap and speak over one another, creating inconsistent narratives. To capture that feeling the shots in the film are disjointed and cut at impromptu times.
The films are the first installment into a larger story within a world that is strange and unusual.
The SOLITUDE films were featured on the online magazine publication She’s Got Wonder in October of 2018. The magazine is a community platform dedicated to celebrating and showcasing the work of young female identifying artists. To read the article, check out the button below.