Sitting together in the dark

assembly of borrowed sunrises, arranged as received, in reverse order

from end to beginning:

  1. jasmine
  2. shin
  3. therese
  4. eya
  5. errika
  6. ro
  7. father
  8. brother
  9. chang ming
  10. sarah
  11. pot
  12. indira
  13. arabella
  14. vinita
this version:

single-channel video with sound i don’t have the license to use - pain relief frequency. the sun small enough to fit the palm of one’s hand.

original version for atelierfrankfurt:

two-channel video without sound, two screens facing each other, talking to each other. one screen holds the text, borrowing warmth from the second screen holding the images.

2021, November 11 - November 21

This project is made possible through the invitation of Sarah Reva Mohr and the key participation of Goa-based photographer, Vinita Barretto.

Will you forgive me for not being there for you?
If I forgive you for not being there for me?

Opened a call for sunrises. Each thing sent, I believed. Projected on a wall in our house, and then filmed again. And yet the framing never exact. Like trying to carry water with one’s hands - taking a part, taking apart. A symptom of not being able to bear as before - picked up a lamp, wanted to make everything warmer. 
There’s an Inuit word, Qarrtsiluni, which means sitting together in the dark, waiting for something to happen. Every year people would gather in a house where no lamps are lit and they sit in darkness, in qarrtsiluni, and they think of new songs, beautiful things.

I heard this not too long ago listening to Teju Cole and maybe the impulse to gather sunrises comes from there, but then maybe it is only something I needed to do.

So many other things to say about what has brought me here.

At first I was just attached to sending people to retrieve, to think of the sky, the sun rising and that endless blue in the morning just before it breaks.

I didn’t know that this would be the form I would rest upon, just this holding of other people’s memories. I didn’t know that I did not need a lot.

in their own words:

Rômy is an Ilocano-Visayan and Austrian person who writes non-fiction, makes photo and video art and does social organising. They live with climate crisis induced disability. They make work across multiple life-worlds on the unceded lands of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation. They have been published by Australian National University, Liminal Magazine, Voiceworks, Red Pocket Press and Australian Poetry Journal, amongst others. They have exhibited photo and video works at the Centre for Contemporary Photography (AU) and Victorian College of the Arts (AU), and have a forthcoming show with Alfred Marasigan at VBKÖ (AT). Their praxis is currently oriented towards deep play, ritual and portal-making.