London Memory multi+city is a 25 minutes optical illusion experimental film relating the Bergsonian idea of memory with that of duality in a contrapunctum of movement, colour, text and sound. Memory thus appears as a mirror of the mind being the reminiscence of time and space reflected. The holistic transcendental synthesis of a pure past over ten years lived in London by Margarida Sardinha renders itself in a stream of consciousness through the works of those Londoners who influenced her, such as Howard Hodgkin, Virginia Woolf, John Latham, Anish Kapoor, Sri Aurobindo, William Blake (to name a few) as a geometric-sonic abstract continuum. London personifies the ideal description of a long lived, loved or imagined city used by Bergson to convey the impossibility of the analysis or creation of concepts through recursive points of view – reductionism – for it will always fail to give the true feeling of walking in the street of the city itself and the zeitgeist of its collective unconscious at a given time; the city being such a fluid phenomenological cluster can only be perceived by intuition’s capability of grasping the absolute and has always tested the limits of its concepts much sought by religions and several thinkers alike such as Italo Calvino through the words of Marco Polo in Invisible Cities: “Journeys to relive your past?” – Kublai Khan was asking, which could also be formulated as: “Journeys to recover your future?” and Marco’s answer was: “Elsewhere is a negative mirror. The traveller recognises the little that is his, discovering the much he has not had and will never have.” The city thus becomes the archetype of Nemesis where the foreigner traveller constantly faces duality whose structural process embodies dogma, organization, simulation, derivation, fragmentation, pluralisation, deconstruction, assimilation… suggesting the ratio of multiplicity being to duality as duality is to illusion, further doubled within ubiquity being to illusion inasmuch as symmetry is to the mirror - the concept of duality as being a twofold impression (Maya) of the same substance and opposites as ideological correlates. Hence, dichotomy emerges as a fractal symmetrical and illusionary phenomenon through which human consciousness commences to understand oneness besides its derivative ever evolving multiplicity.
London Memory multi+city
25min. optical illusion digital animation experimental film
written, directed & animated by Margarida Sardinha
soundtrack by António Vilhena d’Andrade
voices by Margarida Sardinha & Stephen Brennan
2013-15 Official Selection
Winner of Best Cinematic Vision Awarded by London Film Awards, UK
Study of Stillness film screenings presented by Blake Bertuccelli, Los Angeles, USA
Athens Animfest, Athens, Greece
Bideodromo, Bilbao, Spain
Paradise Remade, Hastings, UK
Kolkata Shorts International Film Festival, Kolkata, India
Moab International Film Festival, Moab, USA
IFFEST Document.Art., Bucharest, Romania
Simultan Festival - 'Popular Unknown', Timisoara, Romania
By converging into the union of mind effected opposites such as original & copy, objective & subjective, time & space, male & female, cause & effect, light & dark, heart & mind, harmony & chaos, spirit & matter, random & determinate, individual & collective, motion & inertia etc. the whole surfaces as far greater than the sum of its two parts and polarity as a simple differentiation within which we are able to define and categorise its pluralism. Consequently in the film this gestaltic reenactment of coincidentia oppositorum is implicitly analogous to the holism of Bergson’s duration through a myriad of overlapping afterimages that create an illusionary sequence merging single immutable geometric solids and random impressions. The optical illusion performed by the angular velocity of a static symbol renders the multiplicity of a codimension as interlaced mirror-images of the same icon, which are then integrated with yet another background illusion of concave and convex duplications - two internally consistent worlds that when juxtaposed make a completely inconsistent composite world. Dynamic symmetry and poetical-sonic repetition act as a metaphorical bridge to this union and thus the inversion of polarities becomes possible symbolising a sacred marriage between the several dual manifolds. This hieros gamos, remembrance of a sacred love, is the foundation and the culmination of duality, akin to the words of Tagore: “In love all the contradiction of existence merge themselves and are lost. Only in love are unity and duality not a variance. Love must be one and two at the same time. Only love is motion and rest in one. Our heart ever changes its place till it fin.” Concluding further and beyond the inevitable logico-mathematical paradoxes implied in self-referential meta-dualism, Shakespeare discloses this oxymoron of schism in Phoenix and Turtle as being equally within love that the illusion of doubleness can be overcome:
“So they loved as love in twain,
Had the essence but in one,
Two distincts, division none:
Number there in love was slain.
Hearts remote, yet not asunder;
Distance and no space was seen
‘Twixt this turtle and his queen;
But in them it were a wonder.
So between them love did shine,
That the Turtle saw his right
Flaming in the Phoenix’ sight;
Either was the other’s mine.
Property was thus appalled
That the self was not the same;
Single natures, double name,
Neither two nor one was called.
Reason in itself confounded
Saw division grow together;
To themselves yet either neither,
Simple were so well compounded,
That I cried, ‘How true a twain
Seemeth this concordant one:
Love hath reason, Reason none,
If what parts can so remain.”