Sol Archer

film - samenwerking

Sol Archer (1983) is a Netherlands based artist working through collaboration with professional and non-professional groups, considering the encounter as a space of production. Frequently employing video as an apparatus for producing a doubling of experience; productive of 'works' through collective act, and through movement towards the work, productive of new collectivities and ways of being together. This extends into a pedagogical practice on structures and systemising group environments focused on self reflexive film-making practices and the legacy of collaborative film practice in relation to ethnofiction.

On a bare rock by the ocean you will never hear anything but birds whose cries blend with the sound of winds – 2022 - Digital film - 15:20 The tropical greenhouse is the paragon of the construction of nature as tropical spectacle, a montage of discontinuous seasons, climates, and ecosystems, narrating ecological travelogues for the spectator passing through the hard cut of the glass door. Within, ‘nature’ is a collage of image making practices, inherited from the colonial period of scientific expeditions sending specimens to the emerging institutes of the metropole. The European landscape tradition, alternately appropriating and denigrating plants of colonised territories has left us with composite ecologies, gardens, parks, and farms, montages of ecosystems and climates forming relations according to aesthetic, cultural, and commercial criteria and calling for specific relations of care and maintenance. In this film work volunteers who maintain a greenhouse built in the 1860s in a small, northern Dutch village, soundtrack their maintainance labour with vocal re-creations from the archives of Hercules Florence, French Brazilian amateur scientist and ‘isolate inventor of photography’, who, in 1831, intending to birth a new acoustic branch of Biology, transcribed Brazilian animal calls to send to the French scientific institutes. ‘On a bare rock by the ocean you will never hear anything but birds whose cries blend with the sound of winds’ is a tonal work on the construction of ecologies as image practice emergent contemporaneously with traditions of photographic and filmic image making, and the maintenance of colonial spectacle.
A Muitas Mãos / Held By Hands – 2021-2022 - Publication Portuguese / English In collaboration with Publication Studio Sao Paolo and Casa do Paolo, Sao Paolo. Over the past few years the scale and scope of the Kpop community has revealed itself through mass scale online activistm. Fans raised millions for social justice activists, such as BLM legal costs, aid to Yemen, pro-democracy movements in Thailand, groups crashed extreme-right websites, collapsed Trump web-shops. The sheer number of members in these fandoms is incomprehensible, and the capacity they wield to collectively facilitate social developments and foster a justice agenda is on a trans- continental scale that is arguably unprecendented and, coming as it does from a non-western mainstream cultural interest, widely un-reported. While on residency in Rio de Janeiro in 2018 I met and filmed with a dedicated amateur KPOP dance covers community, who rehearse routines from KPOP music videos, using the windows of the Museum of modern art (MAM) as mirrors. With this project through an open call distributed on Fandom channels, I commissioned a series of texts from members of this community, whose formal practices range across philosophy, museology, and activism, to think together about how their experience of popular culture as a community building device meets the conditions of formal establishment culture. This project is an attempt to platform voices engaged in this process, and, even if in a very small way, a way to financially support young creative practices when there is little support from the state during covid-19. Lanch events have been held at Casa do Povo Sao Paolo, MAM Rio, and TENT Rotterdam and in late 2022 at the South London Gallery, UK. available at books/k-pop/
who makes the city – launched 2022 - website and talks platform Who Makes The City is a perepatetic talks platform, initiated with Alissa Kleist of Household CIC during the exhibition of not only the earth we share. It is an episodic format, to be launched in 2021, which features commissioned video talks from international thinkers on urban conditions, followed by in-situ conversations in different cities with local representatives from political, activist, and urbanism backgrounds. Episode 01 is focussed on Belfast, with speakers including Brenna Bhandar and Daniel Renwick, Anna Minton and Henrietta Williams, Olufemi O Taiwo, and Samuel Stein. At Docs ireland we held an in situ conversation featuring, among others, Malachai O’hara, Mark Hackett, and Agustina Martire, on the political and historical conditions of planning in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and their readings of the Belfast Sailortown conditions. website available at
once you till 2021 - 4K digital video 25” Made within the Four Sisters Growing Project, an eco-feminist agricultural project on brownfield in the periphery of Amsterdam by Marija Sujica and Muge Yilmaz, in collaboration with The Beach. Once you till is a short film collage of human and other-than human touch, relationships, and associations as they emerge following a year of recuperating soil and growing food.
not the we only earth share 2018-2021 - Two channel 4K film and installation with sculptural works (local timber (ash), steel, and curtain) paintings from community, video of historical community theatre productions. “not only the earth we share” is a film and exhibition work produced over multiple years of collaboration with overlapping communities of Sailortown, Belfast, Northern Ireland and commissioned by Household CIC. Sailortown was a working class neighbourhood housing 5-10,000 families, which was demolished in the 1960s to construct an as-yet unfinished motorway interchange. Since then it has stood as an iconic keystone in the identity construction of the city, and is the axis around which cultural identity of former residents and their families revolves. Since 2008 a small social housing block nestled between parking lots, motorways, and the docks, has re- experienced the 1960s exclusion from city planning and development, experienced afresh in ongoing encounters with the same unfinished road development being expanded, property speculation enveloping them, and lack of infrastructure keeping them isolated from the city. Collaborative stagings of the past, present, and future conditions of life in a neighbourhood are poetically and messily plotted out, and the continuation of life in the cracks of the city through deliberate platforming of culture as an interplay between joy and resistance. Not only the earth we share platforms the practice of making community through cultural performance and the continuing existence of Sailortown a community of resistance. Through film workshops with children, docker poetry, song, prayer as protest, and the structuring of time through ritual, procession, and elective activities it is an elevation of the cultural commons as an urban quality both under continual threat from, and in continual opposition to, the imperial project of property development. This project was made possible thanks to the belief and support of the Mondriaan Fonds, CBK Rotterdam, NI Screen, and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. Preview here not only the earth we share is available from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Collection.
Worlds in Formation 2018-2021 - ‘Worlds in Formation’ was filmed over weekends spending time with a community of young amateur dancers who rehearse KPOP (Korean Pop Music) dance covers using the windows of the Museum of Modern Art, Rio, as mirrors. It documents rehearsal, hanging out, preparation, competition, and care, acts towards building a community as a generative space of resistance through elective assembly and shared interest. Through a non-linear and rhythmically repetitive structure, the film reflects the bagginess of time that characterises teenage cultures of hanging out, appropriating space without ownership. In a political moment in Brazil which is deeply dangerous to be queer, female, black, poor, or trans, this community are consciously acting to build a space to exist in public, producing a high visibility presence for oppressed minorities. Over weekends spent with this community, recording rehearsals, performances, and moments of care, the film follows fragments from conversations about the nature of their community and their reflections on their collective creative practice as an act of resistance, and making and remaking images with bodies. Worlds in Formation documents moments of collective practice, creating spaces of care, resistance, and survival, and producing counter- publics in the city, staging rehearsal as the conjuring up of a desired world within the confines of the present. Made possible through the care and support of Capacete, Rio de Janeiro, and the Mondriaan Fonds voor beeldende Kunst. Worlds in Formation can be accessed at the Cinemateca Rio de Janeiro. Preview available here
Caminhar ao redor, caminhar para longe To Walk Around, to Walk Afar – 2019 - 3 channel video. in collaboration with Cristina Ribas, Lucas S. Ico and the vila autodromo community. Vila Autódromo is a community on the periphery of Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, that partially survived violent and protracted evictions undertaken by the city administration to clear land for the 2016 Olympic site. The self-built neighbourhood was established in the 1960s, by labourers in the fishing and construction industries between nature reserves and the lagoon. The neighbourhood, coveted by real estate developers since the city has grown to envelop the region, was subjected to particularly brutal military police action during the development of the Olympic site. Artists Cristina Ribas and Lucas S. Icó have been working with the community during and since their eviction, collecting a glossary of the struggle, and aiding in the birth of the Museu das Remoções - The Museum of Evictions, a grass roots organisation linking, supporting, and memorialising evicted communities in Rio. In 2018 the Museu das Remoções, Cristina Ribas, Lucas S. Icó, myself, and members of the Vila community organised a number of workshops utilising techniques from Boals Theatre of the Oppressed to re- enact and memorialise the theatrical practices of the dispersed Vila Autódromo community. Engaging with collective acts of memory, play, and improvisation these workshops form the basis for theatrical re-telling, re-inscribing and re- orientating communal experience. The central video of To Walk Around, To Walk Afar is derived from these theatrical workshops. Accompanying it are two partner videos. The first, ‘Caminhar pra Longe’ follows Denise Costa dos Santos, who lived in the community since childhood, on her daily walk up the local mountain and back again. This is her daily route where she collects recyclable materials from which she makes her living. She discusses moments from her memory, her perceptions and reactions to the environment, and her practice of walking as self care. The second accompanying video, ‘Nem Todos Tem um Preco’ follows a neighbourhood dog in a circular route around the site of the demolished neighbourhood, now reverting to partially tended forest surrounding it’s single surviving house. Commissioned by Adeline Lépine, for the (Con)Vivências, at le Crac 19, Montbéliard, France. With Cristina Ribas and Lucas S. Icó. Researched and filmed whilst on the Mondriaan Fonds supported Capacete Residency in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.
Pas de Cerise Sans Noyau 2020-2022 - 4K digital video 52:00 in collaboration with Ju Hyun Lee Made in collaboration with artist Ju Hyun Lee who spent the covid period working closely with an agricultural community in the Haute Saone, France, who produce Kirsch, a regionally specific drink. This film turns a lens on to the signifiers of place, taste, and shared bodily experience of collective labour, and labour which marks you as a part of a community - as after harvest workers hands are stained blue for weeks. The survival of this tradition is a model of existence through relation. Rhythmically the work follows three seasons over three years, through embodied labour, environment and texture, and the gradations of colour and sound in the harvest, distillation, consumption, and bottling. In this production model harvest is collective, with each family working the orchard of one another, and the tools, machines, and spaces are collectively owned, and the survival of this form depends on the varieties of cherry tree they grow, which are threatened by increasingly unpredictable and destructive seasons. The past two years brought unseasonal heat and frost, destroying the harvest and forcing new resilience and adaptation to changing cycles of the year. Project website here
To All the Gods, Honey, To the Mistress of the Labyrinth, Honey In Equal Amounts – 2019 - six month education program, performative walking tour, video, publishing, conversation, custom made objects. with Ina Hagen, the Index Teen Advisory Board (ITAB), Index Foundation, and Index curator and producer Emmeli Person. In collaboration with Ina Hagen, the Index Teen Advisory Board (ITAB), Index Foundation, and Index curator and producer Emmeli Person, To all the Gods... was a performative city walk, which staged actions, interventions, and observations generated through a discursive five month engagement with the Index Teen Advisory Board a year long, paid, educational and institutional advisory project run by Index, through which eight 15-20 year olds provide feedback and critique on the curatorial program. Between February and June Hagen and Archer instigated a number of exercises and conversations with the group, ultimately inviting propositions and interventions from the ITAB members to observe and temporarily re-code behaviour in public spaces in the city. These propositions engage with particular interests of each member, and variously engage with monumental sculpture, histories of Swedish labour movements, the immigrant experience and nationalism, normalised behaviour, differential development of civic infrastructure by class and race community profile, and cinematic codings of space. Taking inspiration from historical and mythological images of Labyrinths, non-linear narratives through Borges Garden of Forking Paths, and the Bloco, a Brasilian carnival form which moves through public space without fixed route or leadership, skirting the grey areas between permitted public assembly and spontaneous happening. To all the Gods... was an assemblage of these propositions into a non-linear, performative walk through the city. Led by a map which wove links to digital content into the movement through physical space, audience-participants were guided in re-staging the ITAB propositions, in each case led by a short film made by the respective ITAB member, and gifted a limited edition of objects made in collaboration with the group. The tour took in multiple superimposed historical, aesthetic and symbolic layers in the city, gesturing toward monumental aesthetics and the perpetuation of pre-historic imagery in the political currency of the present, and culminated in an open discussion over honeyed tea in the Index garden. ITAB 2019 were Daniel Murisima, Ida Ippolito, Hannes Schelin, Mika Sundell, Isabella Gillborg, Maria Muhoza, and Niko Erfani. Made possible by the generous support of the CBK Rotterdam reisfunds, OCA. Norway, and Nordic Culture Point Mobility Funding.
cartography and care – 2018 - audio tour, workshops, hand painted curtains. Cartography and Care: the multiple village is a project developed through a residency with PEER, Amsterdam and PHLOX, of Huns Friesland. Over the space of a short residency in the spring of 2018 I engaged in conversations and encounters with residents of Huns, a village in Friesland, the Netherlands. Establishing the encounter as a site of transitive production and shared experience, these conversations focussed on residents play, creative practices, and practices of care for the land, animals, and environment. Considering the multiplicity of spaces that each narrative lays over the physical infrastructure of the village. I developed a workshop to be run by PEER, wherein children of the village recorded an audio tour of the village, detailing their play spaces, and the invisible narratives that coordinate their experience of the village, and following this they mapped these narratives on hand-painted painted curtains which remain permanently installed in the PHLOX space in the village.