A Fire Ritual for the Heart @ Library

A still from my video A Fire Ritual for the Heart

The Claverack Library here in the Hudson Valley (NY) is hosting an exhibition Creativity Amid Chaos. My video ‘A Fire Ritual for the Heart’ will be featured in the Marilyn and Bob Laurie Gallery. There is an opening today from 5-7pm — and it’s Food Truck Day, too! Stop by the library to see all the works.

I was delighted to have my video included in the exhibit Silent Fire, a joint venture with Nasty Women Connecticut and the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. Thanks to Stephanie Johnson and Lys Guillorn for cheering me on. The short film is meant to accompany a performance of Barbara Strozzi’s Ardo in tacito foco, which gave the exhibit its title.

A Fire Ritual for the Heart

2021: video

This silent film was inspired by and is a companion to Barbara Strozzi’s ‘Ardo in tacito foco’. Capturing the suffering of Strozzi’s lament, this silent film shows a woman undertaking a ritual to assuage her aching heart, invoking the cleansing power of fire to burn away the love that makes her suffer. It is silent (‘Heart that forbids the tongue to speak the name of its beloved’) but of a length suitable to accompany a performance of the lament. It evokes the fiery nature of passion, but also the resilience of the heart. The palette gestures to the three alchemical colours of transformation: red, white, and black. It was designed to accompany Catherine Bott’s recording of the song on To the Unknown Goddess: A Portrait of Barbara Strozzi (Carlton Classics, 2013) but could accompany any rendition of the composition.