In the village of Stanewick, folk love to talk. They love to gossip, to tell tall tales and to help each other … and when they have a problem no-one can solve, they look to the hills. But when they learn to tell the time, Nature has to come to the villagers to sort things out. Enjoy this new piece created as part of Refresh Now, Shetland Arts' series of commissions for April.
The text is written and narrated by award-winning poet Jen Hadfield, who is interested in how we engage with different kinds of consciousness. This story was inspired when she visited Faroe in 2019 and noticed how important rock is in the Faroese landscape, where people often build sheds and houses right up against immense rocks that have rolled down from the hamars on Faroes steep-sided mountains. What is the relationship like between folk and stone? Geology seems just as eloquent in Shetland, and Jen has been exploring particular named and otherwise charismatic rocks here at home.
The artwork takes the form of handmade light puppets and paper-cut animation by visual artist Gilly Bridle, whose work is synonymous with Shetland and Scandinavian landscapes and people, and who has been developing her live animation practice during lockdown.
The music, written and recorded by Jenny Sturgeon, provides a rich soundscape of melody and song which will accompany the film. The film score also incorporates field recordings made throughout the year in Shetland.
This video work will be available online from Wednesday 7 April. The work will be premiered across our YouTube, Facebook and Instagram TV channels, and available to view online until Monday 31 May.