Jamilah Sabur, Playing Possum

T H E  U N S E E N  F E S T I V A L

a love letter to death. Elijah by Mahalia Jackson was playing in the studio and I slipped into a trance, the only goal was ‘becoming.’ When a possum is under threat it plays dead to avoid death. The space in the studio became a world I felt close to, I was underwater on the moon. In composing the video during the editing process, I composed a score for the first two-thirds but used American composer, Jon Forshee’s score “Sinew” as the structure to edit the video, which appears in the last third of the video, where the exploration is the spatialization of sound. I wanted to create an atmosphere in the video that appeared to be like the changes in ambient pressure, like what happens to a body that slips into the cold airless void—when the human body is suddenly exposed to the vacuum of space or deep water—sudden depressurization.

Video. Color/Sound. 2015. 10 mins.

This film will screen as part of The Unseen Festival at Counterpath on Thursday, September 28, 2017.

Jamilah Sabur was born in Saint Andrew Parish, Jamaica and lives and works in Miami. Sabur received her BFA in Interdisciplinary Sculpture from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2009 and an MFA from University of California San Diego in 2014. Recent exhibition and screening venues include REDCAT, Los Angeles; MoMAPS1, NY; Armory Art Center, Palm Beach; and HistoryMiami Museum.