GIVE BIRTH TO ME TOMORROW | Part 5
Thu 23 Sep 2021 / 7.30–9pm
We are delighted to announce the fifth instalment of GIVE BIRTH TO ME TOMORROW, this year’s Artists’ Moving Image Festival, which has been co-programmed by artists and writers Tako Taal and Adam Benmakhlouf.
For this iteration of sugar and Bones, developed and adapted by Thulani Rachia as a single channel piece, Rachia uses Langston Hughes’ A Dream Deferred to reflect on a changing urban landscape as a method of remembering.
Originally presented as a duo of works, Ukhumbula Khuphi (Where Do You Remember?) and Ukhumbula Kanjani (How Do You Remember?) at Civic Room, Glasgow, which patiently tracks the changes in Glasgow’s cityscape. Textual interjections were made throughout, coming from African (Nguni) dream theory, which “recognises dreaming as central to an individual and a community’s wellbeing and positions dreams and the body as a site of ancestral knowledge.”
Rachia films outside a construction site, showing the stages of deconstruction as an instance of the city’s colonial architecture is unceremoniously torn down to make way for a four-star boutique hotel. Rachia’s filmic response tracks the choreography of the crane, as it becomes a stiff and careful arm, methodically pulverising the building’s remains.
In this new edit of the work for The Hidden Gardens, Rachia draws a line of connection between the deconstruction of the Glasgow cityscape and the breakdown and decay of Harlem’s built environment in the 1950s. In each case, the buildings share their origins in the lost lives, freedom, dreams and hopes of enslaved and colonised people. So it is there’s the double injustice of wrongs that are first painfully endured, then – in a subtly brutal twist – erased from the record unacknowledged. Recognising the particularities of this moment here in Glasgow, the film poignantly draws attention to the insidious consequences of beautification and gentrification. Namely, the demolition of the once grand architecture funded by the profits of violent exploitation bolsters the endemic denial of the central role of Scottish culture and people in colonial rule.
Work details: 22 min, HD video, silent
In person outdoor screening event: Doors open 7:30pm, screening 8pm, Thursday, 23 September
Work available online: 24 September – 1 October via LUX Scotland website
Image: Thulani Rachia, of sugar and Bones, 2019–21. Courtesy of the artist.
The festival will continue with a series of screenings and events scheduled to follow the lunar calendar across the rest of 2021. The programme lies in between the folds of artists’ moving image, performance documentation, protest documentary and animation, considering their strategies for interruption, to undo the formal and psychological trappings of a neo-colonial, white supremacist, capitalist, patriarchal cinema system.
The film will be screened outdoors, it is 22 minutes long and silent.
For information on how to find Tramway you can find information on their website: https://www.tramway.org/visit-us/
The Hidden Gardens is an urban green space adjacent to Tramway, entrance to the screening will be through the main Tramway door.
Seating: Seating will primarily be on grass. There will be a limited number of chairs available for those who require them. To book a seat, please email email@example.com
Floor Surfaces: The Hidden Gardens has a gravel path bordered with concrete flagstones, and a concrete patio area.
Toilet facilities: There will be access to Tramway’s toilet facilities. There are gender neutral toilets located on the ground floor and mezzanine level, and separate male and female toilets on the upper foyer. An accessible toilet which is suitable for wheelchair users is available on each level.
Weather: In case of bad weather preventing the screening going ahead, we will be in touch with ticket holders by 12noon on Thursday 23 September to advise of cancellation.
1. A landscape graphic with protest placard like shapes emblazoned with the words ‘GIVE BIRTH TO ME TOMORROW’ in capitalised san serif font. The rectangular shapes splay out across an intense reddish pink background, overlapping one another.
2. A video still showing a building demolition in progress. An orange excavator takes up most of the frame, it’s arm, and worn red bucket dominate the foreground. In the background to the right a two-story red brick building is in a state of demolition, it’s rooms are open to the air. To the left another building is covered in scaffolding while a tower block rises in the distance.
GIVE BIRTH TO ME TOMORROW, this year’s Artists’ Moving Image Festival, is supported by Screen Scotland and Film Hub Scotland in partnership with Tramway.
About the artist
Thulani Rachia is an artist and educator based in Glasgow. Having grown up in South Africa, his arts practice contemplates socio-spatial relations constructed by history and the built environment.