Overview, Images
Slo Collective, what ties us apart, 2022, 16mm short films, 17min. Courtesy the artists.

what ties us apart

slo - Ranima Montes, Gabriel Francis, Kalu Oji, Mimo Mukii & Ivy Mutuku., Helena Inez Abapo, Panda Wong

12–29 Oct 2022

what ties us apart is the debut exhibition from film collective slo. This show is a collection of work that responds to memories over distance. How malleable they become as we stretch their significance. Something steadfast can disintegrate after a moment, but in the same breath, changed context can allow for growth. Each work delves into nuanced movements of grief and connection.

A considered collaborative work, this show is made up of artists responding to the prompt in their respective mediums with each work standing on their own, but experienced best together.

Two 16mm films, The fish that ties its body in knots (dir. Ranima Montes) and What’s in a Name? (dir. Kalu Oji) reflect on Panda Wong’s contrapuntal poem, radiance every day. The space is completed with Helena Inez Abapo’s interactive installation, ∞ chairs, physically embodying the themes of “what ties us apart”.

Slo is made up of filmmakers, Ivy Mutuku, Kalu Oji, Mimo Mukii, Ranima Montes and Gabriel Francis. Together they write lines to be imagined and memorised for the screen.

The featured works are:

The fish that ties its body in knots (dir, Ranima Montes|prod, Mimo Mukii & Ivy Mutuku | dop, Gabriel Francis)
Dreams blend with myth and memories, when Poling and Ligaya remember their estranged older sister. 

In the Philippines, the anting anting or “lucky amulet” can be the tangible reason for the unknown. Usually gifted, they protect you from danger, but they can also be found, chanced upon or gained. Grief is intangible as is memory. I wanted to make a film out of memories, that delves into how broken familial ties can leave a lasting invisible impression. From this grief, we make new memories in our dreams. We make new worlds in films to make these memories feel real. A cyclical practice to untie the knots we each carry.

What’s in a Name?’ (dir, Kalu Oji |prod, Mimo Mukii & Ivy Mutuku | dop, Gabriel Francis)
Whilst being interviewed for a larger documentary, a young couple rediscover fractures from a forgotten history. 

‘What’s in a Name?’ is an experiment in genre, performance and process. Working closely with actors Faro Musodza and Makwaya Masudi, we built the scenes and characters over a series of weekend workshops. I knew from the outset that I wanted to play with form – to reimagine the ‘mockumentary’ genre and to capture a sharp shift in tone within a single conversation. Somewhere between reality TV and melodrama, the improvisational nature of this approach produces a film that is reactive, encouraging the audience to engage with the characters as if they were another body in the room.

radiance every day
(poem, Panda Wong)
A contrapuntal poem exploring grief & memory, which can be read three ways: the right and left columns as individual poems, or both columns together as a whole poem.

∞ chairs
(8 found chairs, ribbon, Helena Inez Abapo)
A gathering of eight collected chairs, tied together with satin ribbon. Guests are invited to sit and move the chairs to view artworks as they please.

Download Exhibition Text
Onsite, Exhibition
Opening: 20 Oct 2022, 7am–9am

This program takes place on the land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We recognise that sovereignty was never ceded - this land is stolen land. We pay respects to Wurundjeri Elders, past, present and emerging, to the Elders from other communities and to any other Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders who might encounter or participate in the program.

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The Nicholas Building

Room 14, Level 7, 37 Swanston Street

Melbourne, Victoria, 3000

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Working on unceded sovereign land of the Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation, Blindside pays respect to Elders, past, present and emerging.