Delia Gonzalez
Horse Follows Darkness
2018, 19:40 min
Day 2, Screening 1
16 Dec 2018, 13:45

The 16mm film was shot at the Athens School of Fine Arts Annexe on the island of Hydra, Greece: a surreal venue seemingly suspended in time and space, whose ghostly, or other said otherworldly spaces evoke memories, fears, feelings. Darkness as a morbid layer of reality. Learning to dance with one own’s demons as a metaphor for transcendence.

Featuring an all female cast of five ballet dancers, the narration unfolds segmented into three acts, through which a heroine—whose looks, upon close observation, emerge as a fierce, sensual and enigmatic, perhaps even self-referential aesthetic leitmotif following Gonzalez’ central character in In Remembrance—conquers her battles with the embodiments of the devil, shadow, seduction, and fear, all styled accordingly. Inspired by early 1970's French film, spirituality and mysticism, Gonzalez reveals the complex tensions intertwining the deepest workings of the heart and mind.

There where the elegant, tense and sinuously dramatic narration shifts to the next frame, the soundtrack and the choreographies (but for the second dance, co-choreographed with Jessie Gold and Vivi Brakoumatsou), synchronised and synchronising, become the glue. The abstract lines of the dance design, the ascendent, imperturbable, unavoidable climax of the music, cross-over sensory experiences as if per synesthesia make the outcome of this inner war unpredictable, the roulette of life is pursued till the very last instant.

And as the heroine and her foes are formalised on film, flesh, silk, a piano playing by itself, a checked floor, or a vivid gaze, Horse Follows Darkness per se embodies the spirit of the gesamtkunstwerk: entirely composed, conceived and choreographed by Gonzalez, who scouted the location, casted the dancers, created a score on a custom modular synth (released last year via the independent label DFA), designed the costumes, the hair and the makeup, directing a multilayered story of imagery, and intuition.