PERFORMANCE • VIDEO • INSTALLATION
New Dirty Churches video
Hearts are Dust: A eulogy for Sarah Winchester
About this video:
Hearts are Dust A eulogy for Sarah Winchester
Video collage by Dirty Churches (Jesse Gelaznik & Rachel Blackwell)
Cut up Narration originally by Lillian Gish from the film "Mrs.Winchester's House" 1963 Documentary
About this video:
This video collage is inspired by the folklore surrounding Sarah Winchester and the construction of the Winchester house. It does not represent the Winchester house literally but focuses on the occult imagery and ideas that are involved in the bewildering architecture, along with the paranormal catalyst for the construction of a home for victims of the Winchester rifle. The numerological elements, blueprints, representations of Sarah, sounds of construction, echoing voices all conjure a ghostly image of her bizarre reasoning. The cut up narration with synthesized tones creates an abstract soundtrack for a hypnotic story telling environment. This video was originally used as a background projections for a Dirty Churches performance at The Spectrum in Bushwick Brooklyn on Aug 1st 2014.
Dirty Churches performs dark and hypnotizing live soundtracks for multi media art installations. In 2003 Jesse Gelaznik formed Dirty Churches with Joe Robinson, Alex Beard and John Delassi. The early Dirty Churches performances consisted of improv noise sets with projections. In 2005 Dirty Churches began performing live sound tracks to Rachel Blackwell’s video art projections. And in 2006 Jesse began writing conceptual scores for Dirty Churches performances and recordings including the track Eat Birth, which was recorded for a noise comp titled Getting rid of the Glue on Pendu Sound. In 2009, Dirty Churches performed a live score for Rachel Blackwell’s video art Yes!Witches, Rituals and Meditations on Death during the NY Eye and Ear Fest II at the 92Y in Tribeca. In 2011 Dirty Churches arranged music with Robert Boston for video art by Rachel Blackwell for a performance at Diverse Works in Houston, TX. In 2013 Jesse and Rachel created the architectural video installation A Guest in the Cavern for the Northside Town Hall Cultural Center’s 2013 Arts Happening series. This installation was an in depth collaboration between Rachel, Jesse and the writer and artist Natalee Cayton. This show also included the musicians Elizabeth Pulos, Anna Callner, Alphra Martini, Justin Miller, Robert Boston, Eric Elterman, Joe Robinson, Donnie Undeen, and Daniel Garcia. In 2013 Jesse Gelaznik and Rachel Blackwell performed An Orchard of Echoes at Soho20 Chelsea Gallery as part of their Savior Faire performance series. This performance transformed the gallery space into a orchard full of harvest rituals and cascading sounds. Most recently Dirty Churches performed Hearts are Dust: A eulogy for Sarah Winchester at the performance art venue The Spectrum in Bushwick Brooklyn.
DIRTY CHURCHES exhibitions:
2013 An Orchard of Echoes video installation and performance
Images and promotional material
SOHO20 Chelsea Gallery : Savoir- Faire performance series presents : Dirty Churches an Orchard of Echoes Performance by Jesse Gelaznik and Rachel Blackwell
This collaborative multi-media performance explores dramatic rituals performed against hypnotic video projections in an altered environment with a live score. The suggestion of being in an apple orchard during a storm is created by presenting objects from the orchard on pedestals, first person video projections of exploring the orchard, and audio samples such as footsteps, rain and thunder. This in effect creates the setting for the performance of the harvest ritual. The costume for this ritual portrays a masked old woman in farming clothes caring bar chimes. Her hair is bound up in cornhusks and her mask is painted with the alchemical symbols of nature, fire, earth, water and air. The harvest ritual is performed in three parts, introducing the orchard, the storm, and the smearing of the mask with colored pigment as a conclusion. These three parts all have individual musical scores performed live, which establish a sonic environment that completes the illusion of the orchard. The insinuated theme of this piece is the performers relationship to their surroundings as they encounter a storm of percussion and prepare a harvest of dark emotional thoughts. The performance of this ritual takes 20 minutes.
Rachel Blackwell and Jesse Gelaznik of the Dirty Churches combine experimental sound and music making with sculptural installations and ritual-based performance in what they describe as a manifestation of the collective conscious. An Orchard of Echoes will bring together aspects of story-telling and mythology to fabricate and ancient and untold experience. The group’s fluctuating body of members is an ever-changing factor, which can accommodate any number of aesthetics, ideas and directions. Among a world so desperate for control, Dirty Churches defy the notion the we must rely on a constant reality to exist.
2013 A Guest in the Cavern pyramid and video installation with performance
The Northside Town Hall Community and Cultural Center, Inc.’s 2013 Arts Happening Series Presents: A Guest in the Cavern is a multi-media installation featuring Jesse Gelaznik, Rachel Blackwell, Natalee Cayton & Dirty Churches
The cavern provides a typical analogy of the projecting individual. It provides the repetition of light and shadow as a backdrop to the woman in the pyramid. Inside the pyramid she reflects up from the terrestrial world to the celestial and cosmic world. The infinite becomes newly created/birthed/banged. The woman, the light, the constellation and the point. The woman's thoughts are reflected below the water's surface, glowing down to this world. Her exploration of the loneliness and the isolation fill the cavern with echoes of the yin/yang universe, the infinite, the contained, the container. Her pyramid is distribution of mental and emotional weight. Her dress becomes a river of light that emanates out from her core past the walls of the pyramid. Once combined the elements of the video art projections, pyramid installation, performer and dress with a live soundtrack, the space will be completely transformed into a fantastical landscape of thought, sound and vision.
Dirty Churches performers:
Jesse Gelaznik (concept, composer, pyramid structure) • Rachel Blackwell (costume, pyramid performance, video) • Justin Miller (samples) • Robert Boston (synthesizer, samples) • Alfra Martini (vocals) • Liz Pulos (viola) • Eric Elterman (viola) • Anna Callner (cello) • Donnie Undeen (bass clarinet) • Daniel Garcia (percussion)
This event is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC).
Images and Text