A collaboration with film maker Sarah Payton
Standing there on the waterside, in public space, Sarah Payton’s video-installation What it seems to be / Wat het lijkt te zijn makes one think of the old-fashioned tourist viewers. You look through the eyepiece expecting to see the city on the other side of the water, but instead you are offered images of the city, filmed from the water. Images of people, buildings, neigbourhoods and industrial terreins, captured in short scenes. There is music, ambiant and seductive, and the voice of a woman, speaking about the city:
…Inside the single world we think we see, a hundred thousand separate worlds go about their daily business, connected only by the thinnest of threads, the contingency of each only vaguely perceived by the others...
What it seems to be / Wat het lijkt te zijn is about our relation with the city, and with each other. It touches on complex subjects such as globalisation, migration and integration in a sidewise, poetic manner, by re-working them in short stories, citations and memories. Through this are threaded questions of identity – who are we, who am I, who is the other. The work is about Amsterdam, but also about a condition which this city, and her residents shares with other cities around the world.
What it seems to be / Wat het lijkt te zijn opens Saturday June 9th, at the Tolhuistuin in Amsterdam. The installation will be at this location until July 4th, after which it will travel to four more locations along the northern shores of the IJ.