Anakana Schofield – Award Winning Author of Bina, Martin John and Malarky

I nipped in.

Very different watching the same piece a second time, in a completely empty gallery. Last time I’d to share the couch with two strangers, today I was the only body in the two rooms. Not unlike having the swimming pool to yourself, or sitting at the back of an empty bus, your mind relaxes just a bit more and sound is experienced differently. Somehow it’s as if the documentary is just a live piece to camera, there’s an added Brechtian directness because you alone are the only person absorbing it.

It’s curious I never have that experience watching the telly! Maybe it was influenced by my head being freshly scrambled at a talk at another artist run centre and needing an urgent cup of tea, but wanted to get back to Bata before Bata came down from the wall.

I am glad I went back to Bata. My notes when I type them up will explain why. All day I’ve been thinking about how if there’s a biscuit (cookie) factory in a town, how the smell pervades the air. The factory would draw the workers in, the way the biscuits go into the oven and when the workers go home the aroma escapes with them. If you don’t work in the factory, you still live somewhat in the factory.

In the Colony piece (correct description it’s an experimental social documentary according to the blurb) you hear how the owners experienced their company and how in turn the workers did. Like a venn diagram there’s a minor crescent of agreement, mostly it’s starkly different. The owners constructed what the experience of the workers must have been to suit a certain nostalgia, while in turn there was nostalgia in hindsight from the former workers. The workers nostalgia all held the theme of change, how everything had changed since and they could not recognize it. The owners p.o.v. was entirely static ie. what the workers were given.

Notes to follow. I have to figure out what it was I went back to look for.

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