MN Made: Vostok, Faretheewell + The Great Refractor


The Main 3 Thu, Sep 14, 2023 7:00 PM
Film Info
Program:Minnesota Made
Runtime:67 min
Tags:Minnesota Made
Director:Andy Graydon


MN Made Screening Thursday, September 14

The MN Made series celebrates the dynamic range of films made by Minnesota filmmakers and artists. Presented in partnership with FilmNorth and Minnesota Film and TV.

Vostok, Faretheewell and The Great Refractor are two works by Minnesota artist and filmmaker Andy Graydon. Graydon will have a post-screening conversation with moving image artist Rini Yun Matea.

Tickets are FREE (suggested donation: $5) and includes 6:00 PM reception at Pracna (cash bar), 7:00 PM screening, and post-screening conversation.

About the Films

Vostok, Faretheewell

2011; Super 8 film transferred to HD video; 35 minutes

Vostok, Faretheewell follows Yukitomo, a Japanese designer who, while touristing in Berlin, is unexpectedly called by a Korean movie company to create the 3D computer model for a space ship (named the Vostok) in a Science Fiction film. As Yukitomo tours the city, he is in constant discussion with the film’s distant producer on his mobile phone about the increasingly absurd revisions to the project. All along the way, Yukitomo takes photos not of the great vistas of Berlin, but close-ups of surface details and materials, which he uses to “skin” the model of his space ship.

The film is about visions (artistic, political, architectural) as forms of power, and about the de-formations and re-formations they endure on encountering the material world. Graydon traces this in Yukitomo’s struggle to design his model, and in a parallel narrative about the history of Berlin itself, as written in its architectural environments. It is a history of power and conflicting ideas of order, each leaving overlapping traces in the city’s material reality. Berlin is seen as a world in the process of formation and re- formation, defined by provisional measures, aborted completions, attempts at erasure, constant renewals, and shifting cycles of competing interests.

The film examines the shifting nature of the plan, the projection, the model, as it slides between future and past. Failed Utopias are never simply failed: living amphibiously, with one foot in faded ideologies yet with eyes still fixed on the image of a future order, their forms constitute part of the material reality of the present. The Vostok becomes a model not only for a mutating space ship in a fantastical film, but also for a city in the constant process of using its materials of the present to orchestrate perhaps not something new, but something else entirely.

See more about Vostok, Faretheewell.

The Great Refractor

2022; 4k video; 5.1 sound; 32 minutes

The Great Refractor, a collaboration with Irish poet and neuroscientist Laurence O’Dwyer, charts the undulating terrain of our attempts to understand the world through both scientific and poetic inquiries. The film contrasts histories of mapping, visualizing and territorializing with contemporary practices centered on sounding, listening and collective resonation. The film models a ‘refractive’ method of narration and authorship, one that seeks out possible transformations and decolonizations of our processes of interpreting and sharing the world.

The film presents a series of solitary figures engaged in their work, including an astrophysicist, an artist, a translator and a weather station engineer. Participants were asked to mimic with their voices the sounds of sonified observations, from underwater hydrophone recordings to black hole gravitation waves. All the sound in the video was made from these vocal recordings. Through a chorus of voices, stories and practices, the project prods at the sensitive and uncertain interface between outer and inner worlds, exploring regions of doubt where an often inscrutable reality meets the echo chambers of human knowledge.

See more about The Great Refractor.

Artist Bio

Andy Graydon is an artist and filmmaker originally from Maui, Hawai’i. His work is concerned with natural and social ecologies, and with sound and listening as creative practices. Recent projects have focused on island ecologies and the imaginal and narrative forms employed by the natural sciences. His projects frequently engage structures of music such as the ensemble, the score, improvisation and variation, and techniques of the voice.

His work has been presented internationally including shows at the New Museum; Mass MoCA; Berlinische Galerie, Berlin; Frye Art Museum, Seattle; and the Honolulu Biennial. Screenings include the Fulcrum Festival, Los Angeles; the Flaherty Series at Anthology Film Archives; WRO Media Arts Biennial, Poland; Arsenal Institut für Film und Videokunst, Berlin; Millennium Film Archive; Black Maria Film & Video Festival; Worldfest Houston and the Chicago Underground Film Festival.

Graydon has collaborated widely as a sound artist and composer, including work with Jennifer Walshe, Jan St Werner, Michael Pisaro, Richard Garet, Delia Gonzalez, Stephen Vitiello, David Grubbs, France Jobin, Luke Martin, Kenneth Kirschner, Cecilia Lopez, Zimoun, Emily Manzo, Amnon Wolman, Kato Hideki, John Hudak, Klaus Janek, Yukitomo Hamasaki, Sandra Gibson and Luis Recoder.