artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image
artwork image

English

Eileen Simpson & Ben White

Struggle in Jerash, 2009

Selected by Anna Colin

Struggle in Jerash (1957) was the first feature film ever produced in Jordan, directed, filmed and acted by an independent collective of film technicians and cinema aficionados. Struggle in Jerash is the story of a gang of thieves pursuing a woman who has gone to collect some money. The camera follows the thugs, the woman and her lover on a journey across and beyond Jordan, stopping at heritage sites including Jerash and Jerusalem.

During a residency in 2008 in Amman, Jordan, the artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White of Open Music Archive retrieved the film – minus one reel, which had vanished from film archives. They organised a series of screening sessions for small groups of cultural producers, artists, film critics and directors, who were asked to translate the dialogue and give live commentary. Each session was audio-recorded, then edited and sampled to give the film its soundtrack. Simpson and White’s version of Struggle in Jerash shows the untouched footage with commentary ranging from playful remarks about the characters’ style and acting, to observations on the changed political, social and religious landscape of the region. The artists’ work offers an inventive outlook on the political history of the Middle East of the past fifty years as uncovered by insiders reacting to information that had never before been available to them.

Struggle in Jerash (2009) is very much part of the Open Music Archive practice, which is concerned with the widespread circulation and distribution of common cultural resources – notably through the identification of out-of-copyright material, its placement in the public domain and its collaborative reworking.

Eileen Simpson
Born UK, 1977
Lives and works in London

Ben White
Born UK, 1977
Lives and works in London
www.openmusicarchive.org

IMAGE CREDITS

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Serafina Steer performs as part of Free-to-air, Nought to Sixty, Institute of Contemporary Arts London, 2009. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Open Music Archive, ongoing. Website screenshot. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0.

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Flyer design for Declose event - part of Disclosures, Gasworks London, 2008. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0

Français

Eileen Simpson & Ben White

Struggle in Jerash, 2009

Sélectionné par Anna Colin

Struggle in Jerash (1957) est le premier long métrage produit en Jordanie. Un groupe indépendant de techniciens du film, projectionnistes et amateurs de cinéma ont eux-mêmes réalisé, filmé et interprété l'histoire d'un gang de voleurs à la poursuite d'une femme qui va toucher son argent. La caméra suit les voleurs, la femme et son amant pour une traversée de la Jordanie et au-delà, en passant par des sites historiques comme Jerash et Jerusalem.

En 2008, à l'occasion d'une résidence à Amman en Jordanie, les artistes Eileen Simpson et Ben White, membres d'Open Music Archive, retrouvent les bobines de ce film (sauf une) qui avait disparu des archives. Ils organisent une série de projections pour de petits groupes de professionnels de la culture, artistes, critiques de cinéma et cinéastes. Ils leur demandent de traduire les dialogues et de faire des commentaires en direct. À partir de l'enregistrement de chaque session, Simpson et White procèdent au montage d'une bande-son qu'ils rajoutent sur les images laissées intactes. Leur version de Struggle in Jerash intègre ainsi des commentaires parfois drôles sur le style et la manière de jouer des acteurs ainsi que des observations sur les changements politiques, sociaux et religieux du pays. Le travail de Simpson et White pose un regard original sur l'histoire du Moyen-Orient de ces cinquante dernières années. Une histoire redécouverte de l'intérieur par ceux qui commentent et réagissent en direct à ce document unique.

Struggle in Jerash (2009) s'inscrit dans la pratique d'Open Music Archive, un collectif d'artistes qui s'intéresse à la circulation et à la diffusion en masse de ressources culturelles communes, et notamment à la recherche de sources libres de droit, à leur mise à disposition dans le domaine public en vue de leur réappropriation collective.

Eileen Simpson
Née au Royaume-Uni, 1977
Vit et travaille à Londres

Ben White
Né au Royaume-Uni, 1977
Vit et travaille à Londres
www.openmusicarchive.org

IMAGE CREDITS

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Struggle In Jerash, 2009. still from DVD. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike Jordan 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Serafina Steer performs as part of Free-to-air, Nought to Sixty, Institute of Contemporary Arts London, 2009. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Open Music Archive, ongoing. Website screenshot. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0.

Eileen Simpson and Ben White, Flyer design for Declose event - part of Disclosures, Gasworks London, 2008. Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0

advertisement advertisement advertisement