Guattari & Sci-Fi Weekend
Casco – Office for Art, Design & Theory would like to invite you to join a weekend with the workshop—or seeance—UIQ in LOVE_A Love of UIQ: Between Translation and Transduction, led by filmmakers Graeme Thomson and Silvia Maglioni, that rediscovers psychotherapist and philosopher Félix Guattari’s unproduced sci-fi screenplay Un amour d’UIQ [UIQ in Love] from the 1980s.
Guattari’s script Un amour d’UIQ describes what happens when an invisible alien force from a parallel dimension—the Infra-quark Universe—makes contact with a group of humans and begins to desire a form (a face, a body, a language) commensurate with the world of its hosts.
With this workshop/seeance, the filmmakers propose to make Guattari’s unmade sci-fi film exist as a collective experience by not filming a single shot and instead creating an encounter between the script and the desires of those who gather around it. The “seeances” will give shape to the script's images, sounds, characters, settings, and music, imagining what it might be like to be affected by an entity like UIQ in such a way that the encounter expands not only the film’s but our own possibilities.
The filmmakers write further on the workshop cum seeance, "In this seeance we want to consider Guattari’s screenplay as an unstable, potential entity whose coming into being has to be negotiated through an ongoing process of translation and transduction. One of our aims is to ‘produce’ this becoming-film collectively, but without filming a single shot. Instead, the film will manifest itself through a process of contamination/contagion, by ‘translating’ the script’s DNA into mental images that we can describe to each other and by investigating the Infra-quark Universe, its bodily limits, paradoxes, and potentials through a molecular exploration of sound, language, and bodily states. This process will also involve transposing the film's temporality to the conditions of the present day and reimagining its context in relation to the experiences of the envisionaries and their fabulated histories or futures."
The weekend also inaugurates a new collaboration between Terra Critica, the interdisciplinary network for the critical humanities and Casco to present ReadingRoom, a space for careful readings and meaningful conversations around different texts. The ReadingRoom series is titled speculation & fabulation – critique in the SF mode and will commence with the initial session on Guattari's Chaosmosis (1992) discussing chapter one, “on the production of subjectivity” and chapter six, “the new aesthetic paradigms”.
Please register to participate by contacting Ying Que (firstname.lastname@example.org) and receive the detailed program and reading materials. It’s free but seats are limited. More information is available on our website here.
UIQ in LOVE_A Love of UIQ: Between Translation and Transduction is organized in conjunction with two solo exhibitions at Casco now through 25 January 2015: The Common Sense by Melanie Gilligan and In the Year of the Quiet Sun by The Otolith Group.
There will be an audio recording of the séance, fragments of which will be recomposed as part of a polyphonic sound work Thomson and Maglioni will install for their solo exhibition "it took forever getting ready to exist: UIQ (the unmaking of)" co-curated by the Otolith Collective at The Showroom, London (February–March 2015).
ReadingRoom is presented in the context of Affective Communities, a partnership with Utrecht University's Netherlands Research School of Gender Studies.
Saturday, 13 December 2014
16:00–20:00 UIQ Seeance One with Dinner
20:00–22:00 Film Screening In Search of UIQ (73 min, 2013) *
Sunday, 14 December 2014
10:00–12:30 ReadingRoom: Félix Guattari’s Chaosmosis, Chapters One and Six
13:30–16:00 UIQ Seeance Two
* While the screening is open to the public, the seeance is limited to registered participants.
About In Search of UIQ (73 min, 2013) by Graeme Thomson and Silvia Maglioni
Moving surreptitiously between the modes of essay, documentary, and fiction, In Search of UIQ unfolds the story of Félix Guattari’s attempts to produce a sci-fi blockbuster from his original screenplay, Un amour d’UIQ [UIQ in Love]. The script imagines a hyper-intelligent, invisible, protean life force dubbed UIQ (Infra-quark Universe) that makes contact with a community of outsiders while simultaneously causing havoc for global communications networks as it begins to develop consciousness. Guattari began work on the project at the beginning of the 1980s—collaborating at one time with the independent filmmaker Robert Kramer—and his radical vision for a subversive “popular” film would occupy him on and off for the next seven years.
In Search of UIQ sees Thomson and Maglioni reveal key moments in the development of Guattari’s ambitious project. The film has three movements: the first evokes the prehistory of Guattari's previous film projects around the free radio and the Italian autonomist movements; the second is part documentary, part fiction and re-enacts the position of Guattari as an unlikely alien visitor in Hollywood; and the final movement unfolds the artists’ research into Guattari’s archive around the enigmatic figure of a Finnish filmmaker who appears to have his own plans for the Un amour d’UIQ script.
About Graeme Thomson and Silvia Maglioni
Graeme Thomson and Silvia Maglioni are filmmakers and artists whose work interrogates potential forms and fictions emerging from the ruins of the moving image, and whose practice includes the creation of feature films, exhibitions, sound and video installations, performances, event-works, tube-tracts, radio shows, and books. Since 2005, the artists’ production (and, on occasion, resistance to production) has emanated from Terminal Beach, a constructivist zone for critical reflection, exploring possible new configurations of image, sound, text, and politics using cinema in expanded form to reactivate lost or forgotten archives and histories and to create new modes of collective engagement with contemporary thought, occasionally in alliance with other collectives. Their work has been presented widely in international film festivals, museums, and art spaces.
ReadingRoom is a local Terra Critica practice in Utrecht with the collaboration of Casco – Office for Art, Design and Theory. As a series of meetings, it is open to anyone interested in careful and caring close readings. ReadingRoom is meant to create space for content and meaningful conversations in the humanities and beyond. Read more here.