A film and audio installation produced by artist Matt Stokes in association with Sensoria and Site Gallery
In Absence of the Smoky God is a two-screen film and audio installation influenced by science-fiction literature and Sheffield screen-writer, Barry Hines’ 1984 BBC docu-drama ‘Threads’, which chronicled the fictionalised effects of cold-war holocaust on the city's citizens. The installation seeks to create a futuristic epilogue to ’Threads’, in which the reconfiguration of singing and its unifying possibilities post-disaster are imagined. This will be envisioned via the formation of a two-tier society. One of these societies survives in a flame-lit subterranea communicating via a form of clipped and highly simplified English, whilst the second lives above ground using a vocal expression based on tone and texture. Although occupying different worlds, when the abstract communications of the two castes are heard together, the two vocal elements will begin to suggest a musical symbiosis.
The film will operate as a music video, in that it will be led by the sounds, atmosphere and tempo of the vocals. It will feature the vocalists involved, who represent members of the two societies.
In total, 10 vocalists are being drawn together from a variety of Sheffield choirs, singing groups and bands. The newly formed group will then explore ideas through a series of workshops, led by Sheffield-based composer Ben Gaunt. The outcome will be recorded, which will provide the basis for the final film.
The workshops, recording and filming will take place in Sheffield on the following dates:
Workshop 1: Sat 19th July, 10am (3 hrs max).
Workshop 2: Sat 2nd August, 10am (3-4 hrs).
Workshop 3/Final Rehearsal: Sat 16th August, 10am (3-4hrs).
Recording: Sun 17th August.
Filming: Sat 23rd or Sun 24th August
If you are interested in taking part or for more information, please contact: