There is nothing quite the light of late autumn/early winter. Shot on my iPhone while I was supposed to be making lunch. #experimentalfilm #sylviatoy #sylviatoystlouis #performanceart #sylviatoyindustries #AfricanAmericanartist
I have been quite grateful for all the artworld rejections I’ve ever gotten for the past week.
On November 1, I got an email saying: “We really like your work. We were wondering if we may suggest screening AND SO I SAID piece, we think it would go better with the overall flow of our program.” I submitted KILLER JANE, which is 13 minutes, to this festival – the other movie is 5-1/2 minutes.
If you participate in the art world in more than one medium long enough, you will find yourself in the same sort of situation in more than one medium. I can recall exactly how upset I was the first time I submitted two sculptures to a competition and my favorite was passed over while the other won me a prize. That experience did not make any less awful the night my scene partner and I gave a staged reading of my first two-person monologue and right afterwards the artistic director of the venue said to the audience: “I think this should be a solo performance and (pointing out another actress who was in the audience) [she] should do it.” They had to scrape me off the floor that night.
And then there’s the more than once of we-love-your-work-but-we-haven’t-made-our-final-decision-yet; and you wind up not getting selected. It takes years and years and years of rejections to recognize semi-finalist or honorable mention as currency.
So with all the rejections, disappointments and in my face ego battering under my belt, I laughed and told myself: “Don’t get too excited about maybe getting into this festival – you know the drill.”
I was going to write an essay about it however it turned out. I have been trying to get into art venues in Montreal for 20 years in three of my mediums. And I wish I could be there when Burnt Experimental Video Art and Film Festival screens AND SO I SAID.
CREATION is a mythology based on Mbombo, the creator god in the religion and mythology of the Kuba of Central Africa, who created the world by vomiting various parts of it.
I am in the pre-production phase of CREATION, composing a live action storyboard through a process of creating and uploading pre-production worldbuilding, story and character development videos.
CREATION is shot splitscreen and chromakeyed; and montaged with shots from the natural world. There is no dialogue (vocalization and singing are improvised) and the movie will be subtitled and or intertitled as necessary. The sound of the world of the story will be gathered as much as possible from the characters’ movements and mixed with found sounds to enhance the ambience.
The central character of Credo: A Pilgrim is A Pilgrim, who is known to the people who know him only as The Amateur Baritone. The Baritone travels only with a few possessions, the most precious of which is an invisible box containing religious items (a rosary; a Bible; the Philokalia; a small statue of Buddha; and three talking bobble heads who are his religious advisors – a retired abbess, a Catholic priest and a Baptist preacher. He ekes out a living doing odd jobs and singing spirituals for change. The other major characters include A Churchlady, a grandmotherly, well-intentioned type who after hiring him as a gardner now cleans his clothes, feeds him and – convinced he is gay – tries to turn him straight, including introducing him to a Yoga instructor, even though she thinks Yoga is heathen and that her Yoga friend is a slut. A Churchlady’s house is his most frequent stop in his travels. The Yoga Instructor is the sixth major character; rather than try to seduce him, she is trying to teach him “soul,” a quality of which his spiritual singing is sorely lacking.