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La coquille et le clergyman/ The priest and the shell

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La coquille et le clergyman/ The priest and the shell

La coquille et le clergyman /The priest and the shell, 1927
Director: Germaine Dulac
Manuscript: Antonin Artaud

Soundtrack commissioned and funded by Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark, in 2012

Soundtrack: 31 mins.
Solo live electronic remix (short, with film excerpts): 15 mins.
Solo live electronic remix (full film length): 31 mins.

In 2012, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art commissioned me to create a soundtrack for Germaine Dulacʼs silent film, La coquille et le Clergyman, which is considered to be the first surrealist film. The soundtrack ran on the looped installation of the film for the period of the exhibition Avantgardens kvinder 1920-1940, 14th Febr. – 28th May 2012. I also created two live remix versions, which I performed live at Louisiana during the exhibition period.

The film is a flow of dream-like and often absurd images, full of iconic surrealist techniques: mirrorings, splittings, depictions of the city as a psychological space, visual and semantic dissolves, the endless unlocking of doors, and metaphorical images produced by the sexual subconscious. Dulacʼs approach to filmmaking consolidated the role of the director as prime creative artist, bringing her into fierce conflict with script-writer Antonin Artaud, but serving as a vital source of inspiration for the 1950s Nouvel Vague generation of French filmmakers.

My soundtrack is composed of foley sounds, alienated instrumentals and electronics. Involving elements of realistic sounds in synch with the film, but also heavy processing and disjuncture with the images, the new soundtrack and its live remix versions aim to bring contemporary sounds and pulses into dialogue with Dulacʼs own sensitivity to music, tempo and timing.

Review:

Germaine Dulacs surrealistiska stumfilm har här fått ett nykomponerat soundtrack av Juliana Hodkinson som kongenialt fångar den musikalska rytmen i Dulacs klippning.
- Nutida Musik

Year: 
2012
Duration: 
31 minutes
No. of musicians: 
1
with electronics
with visuals
composer in performance
Semi-staged
Audio available
Sound: 
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