This, my second review from Manipulate Festival, focuses on more visceral work, with an emphasis on the relationship between humans and technology.
The first, The Lonely Sailor Weather Report, from South African collective The Lonely Sailors, fuses puppetry, sound and film. Baeletsi Tsatsi, Roberto Pombo, Rob Murray and Craig Leo, along with animator Meghan Judge, have crafted a beautiful piece focusing on a sailor lost as sea, as radios crackle and signals fade away. It’s a moving study in human frailty using traditional puppets, inventive animation and gorgeous scenography.
[Dream] ENGINE Offline Memory Processor, created by Megahertz (Bex Anson and Dav Bernard) in collaboration with circus artist Hannah Finn and produced by Feral, is a very different meditation on the human form.
Almost arachnid like, Finn’s prone body’s dream states are illustrated by the complex design which frames her- a network of tangled wires, squiggles and geometric diamond like shapes which work in tandem with her extraordinary contortionist movement choreography to glitches, waves and drones.
As the shapes around her shift, so too does she, taking on a more human form, both elegant and uncompromising. It’s an astonishing, futuristic work which links science and nature to jaw-dropping effect: humans and tech in synthesis.