35
years
v2_
 

Film by Sami Hammana

~~~~ (2021) is a film by Sami Hammana.

The recurring focus: making sense of that which can’t be sensed.

Whether it is the hazy image of a worker walking transoceanic distances – manually unspooling their undersea-cables from the reel of a steel-hulled ship; or, the cartographic imagery of those same cables, laying across the navigational routes of 16th and 17th century colonial wooden ships. The film ~~~~ engages with these images – ‘partial’ or ‘imperceptible’ in their own ways – with the aim of aesthetically elucidating the complicity of contemporary maritime technology with colonial violence.

Consisting of four acts, the film: (~) engages with that which is above the water’s surface; (~~) establishes the limits of sensing large-scale systems, or what is dubbed ‘the phenomenal threshold of perception’; and (~~~) through the ‘the interscalar ship’, attempts to aesthetically annotate the importance of being aware and able to travel between multiple and differing scales. The film concludes with a final, performative act (~~~~) which aims to read and reenact the hidden movements of the human-labour involved.

Through this process, ~~~~ obsessively observes the image-debris found in the aphotic corners of maritime spaces. Do these lightless oceanic zones conceal colonial complicity? Little of this act is visible. The phenomenal threshold of perception starts to blur the background. Written on the curved wall of the lightless cable-laying vessel’s hull: “Nabil Sharif”, “Mohammed Qasim”, “iron like lion in zion”...

~~~~: Sami Hammana
editing: Ioana Tomici
sound: Lendl Barcelos
voice: Deca Mukhtar-Tawheed
typeface: Simone Browne
colour: Seecum Cheung

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