Early life[ edit ] Alejandra Pizarnik was born on April 29, , in Avellaneda , a city within the Greater Buenos Aires metropolitan area , Argentina ,  to Jewish immigrant parents from Rowno now Ukraine. She also had a marked habit of gaining weight. These contingencies seriously undermined her self-esteem. For this same reason, it is possible that she began to take amphetamines—the same drugs that she became strongly addicted to--, which caused long periods of sleeping disorders such as euphoria and insomnia. She was an avid reader of fiction and poetry.
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I did however like the translation and readings, done with the assistance of the London-based translator Jean Morris. The resulting film helped me see what might have been wrong with my own film : too few images, I think, and neither of them quite strong enough to keep up their end of a dialogue with these verses. Like the majority of Australians, I speak only the dominant English.
My interest in doing this has arisen in part from a personal impulse to in some way transcend the xenophobia and racism that has long been a lamentable aspect of my own geographically-isolated culture. Aside from this, and despite being in my late 50s, I retain a child-like wonderment that our single human species communicates in so many richly varied ways.
In addition, my film-making over 35 years has been largely directed towards international audiences, via the film festival circuit, and now also the web, where poetry film has by far its greatest reach.
I also simply love the expressive sounds of different languages as a kind of music. Jean voiced the poems in Spanish, while Dave spoke them in English. For my film, I retained only the text and voices, which I re-arranged and mixed with new music and images. As in a number of my films, the raw images were sourced from Storyblocks, a subscription website with a vast library of short, random clips from videographers in many different countries.
The collection of shots I selected were then transformed via changes to speed, light, framing and colour, and the addition of long dissolves that blend and juxtapose the images via superimposition.
Some of the images I selected touch on the literal meanings of the poems. These direct connections of image to text are sometimes seen at moments other than when they are spoken. The film also contains a number of shots that bear no direct relation to the words. My overall impulse was to create a series of moving images that might form a kind of visual poem in themselves, while remaining connected to the resonances I found in the text and in the qualities of the voices.
The final visual element is a faintly-flickering overlay containing animated x-rays of human anatomy. The music is an ambient piece by Lee Rosevere , who for several years has generously released much of his music on Creative Commons remix licenses, enabling film-makers and other artists to create new works incorporating his sounds.
I chose this piece for its slow pace, beatlessness and meditative quality, that left room for the voices to take by far the greatest prominence. I am delighted to have especially made this film for REELpoetry, where it had its world premiere. Share this:.
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