Bad Ground, 2023
2 channel 16mm film projection, mirrored glass, paint, latex, mugwort, metal, microphone
16mm film projections on silver gelatin print, wood, fire
Paul Soto

Mori 2, 2023
16mm film projections on silver gelatin print, wood, fire, 40x30”

Mori 3, 2023
16mm film projections on silver gelatin print, wood, fire, 40x30”

CUT TO a wide shot flashing the corner of the room we’re all in. Anamorphic painting originates in the Ming Dynasty to view eros only at a reflected angle then develops in the Renaissance to remember to die. Mori, in Latin meaning death, in Japanese meaning forest, in Mongolian meaning horse. Apparatus bleeds into animacy, contaminates intimacy.

INT. THEATER I carry the camera, so Hanna Hur plays us. She moves through the fourth wall at 24 frames per second towards Theresa Hak Kyung Cha inside the cinema’s screen, inside the 1980 script of White Dust From Mongolia. Cha describes two narratives becoming one superimposition in time. This version emerges in transit.

INT. BODY I’m not looking for a still, maybe it’s volume. Double projecting the 16mm films obliquely onto silver halide atoms in a red room, a heavy metal blooms. I wash the latent image of the latent film of the late artist in acid, set it with bone, burning. It doesn’t look anything like it did then or yesterday or today. The migration is errant, cellular, disintegrating. It’s still a motion picture. When I ask at the photo place if the chemistry always makes these shapes they say No, never.

FADE TO alchemy’s axis across the negative landscape, the mirror sees, situates, severs. It’s not her face but the cube’s, denuded. Remember red is the first color to disappear from sight. The theater exits the dark room. Descending the electromagnetic ladder, the visible waves are tailed by heat then radio. Sometimes when I plug in the latex tube to the microphone to the projector, 1540 AM plays in Korean. I have to hold it with both hands in a kind of prayer, breathing. When I ask about it at the film place they say You have bad ground. The frequencies don’t return to Earth, they start making their own loops. We’re beginning at the end, in medias res.