Opening February 3
“Songs from the Compost”
Songs from the compost: mutating bodies, imploding stars (2020).
4K video, 30:00 min.
Made in collaboration with Marija Olšauskaitė and Julija Lukas Steponaitytė, Songs from the compost is a hypnotic exploration of nonhuman forms of consciousness and different dimensions of symbiotic life: interdependence, surrender, death, and decay.
Shot in the pine forests and dunes of the Curonian Spit, the video performance gradually unfolds through a specially conceived song that channels the desires of an entity shapeshifting across different genders, voices, and beyond-human embodiments. Featuring a cast comprised of local youth, alongside performer and choreographer Mami Kang, the movement rejects the verticality of the human figure by unfurling it into the landscape so that the performers’ bodies are constantly pulled toward the earth and towards each other. In the film, a hypnotic voice sings lyrics that draw from the writings of biologist Lynn Margulis and science-fiction author Octavia Butler and their shared ideas on symbiosis, mutation, and hybridity.
Supported by: Nida Art Colony, 4Cs -From conflict to conviviality through culture, RIBOCA2, Mondriaan Funds, Lithuanian Culture Council
Based in Vilnius and Amsterdam, Eglė Budvytytė (b. 1981, Kaunas, Lithuania) works at the intersection between visual and performing arts. She approaches movement and gesture as technologies for a possible subversion of normativity, gender and social roles, and the dominant narratives governing public spaces. Spanning song, poetry, video, and performance, her practice explores the persuasive power of collectivity, vulnerability, and the permeable relationships between bodies, audiences, and environments.
Her work has been shown at Whitechapel Gallery, London (2022); Venice Biennale (2022); Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art, Riga, Latvia (2020); Renaissance Society, Chicago (2018); South London Gallery, London (2018); Lofoten International Art Festival, Lofoten, Norway (2017); Block Universe Performance Festival, London (2017); Art Dubai Commissions, Dubai (2017); Liste, Art Basel (2015); 19th Biennale of Sydney (2014); Contemporary Art Center, Vilnius, Lithuania (2016, 2010); Stedeljik Museum, Amsterdam (2012). Eglė was resident at Le Pavillon, Palais de Tokyo (Paris, 2012) and at WIELS (Brussels, 2013).
Directing: Eglė Budvytytė
Song lyrics and voices: Eglė Budvytytė
Sound design: Steve Martin Snider
Art directing: Marija Olšauskaitė, Julija Steponaitytė
Solo dance performed and choreographed by Mami Kang
Camera: Vytautas Plukas
Camera assistant: Martynas Norvaišas
Editing: Bart Groenendaal and Eglė Budvytytė
Special effects: Elena Permogorskaya and Viktorija Obor
Special thanks to:
Coda dance school
Klaipėdos Lėlių teatras
Kuršių Nerijos Nacionalinio parko direkcija
Nida Art Colony
4Cs -From conflict to conviviality through culture
Lithuanian Culture Council