Q/LOUNGE – Promotional Video – Tom Parolin
The initial thinking behind this project manifested when I was going for runs on a regular basis. I would often notice rhythmic patterns in my environment which seemed to link with electronic dance music I was listening too. This thinking further developed within a studio workshop, where I was prompted to construct a film from public domain footage. I decided to bring this newly found interest to the workshop, using the internet archives to find a range of footage related to movement, rhythm, and repetition. Within this process, I developed creative skills as I experimented overlaying and blending footage into a sequence which cut to the BPM of an electronic dance song. I took inspiration from the work of Darren Aronofsky, and his use of the hip-hop montage, referencing to a rapid editing style with a focus on music and sound.
A major turning point of my creative journey, was when I discovered CLUB QUARANTÄNE, an online club experience that was running in response to COVID-19. The platform ran as a live stream of electronic music, in which users could connect to each other through cubicles, functioning as chat rooms. This prompted some really intersting dialog between users as they were able to have long and involved conversations, describing their individual experiences through the quarantine. My friend and I decided to make a facebook group so we could create a network that existed past the event. From here, a group member started a zoom, and up to 50 people joined as they danced together live. I then decided for my project, I could record the next edition of CLUB QUARANTÄNE, with peoples permission. I undertook some academic research into humans participating within dance rituals, and modern raves, leaning about the phenomena of mass hypnosis and trance. This lead me to a book called “Cinema, Trance and Cybernetics” by Ute Holl. This text was incredibly beneficial to my project, as it discusses hypnotic techniques used within cinema, and how they can induce a trance in audiences. I watched some films where these hypnotic techniques are employed. Of particular significance, were the films of Toshio Matsumoto. I took a lot of inspiration from Matsumto, with his focus on rhythm, use of strobing effects and obsession with eyes. Through analysing and recutting Matsumotos’s films to dance music, I learnt how adjusting speeds, colours and using markers to cut to BPM points can create a hypnotic effect within audiences. There were then some developments within the Facebook group. One particular member, Lou, a student and DJ based in Netherlands, started a group chat with some other involved members. Lou proposed the idea of hosting our own streaming platform, and introduced another member and friend of his, Alice, who is responsible for the streaming of Utrecht based radio station, Stranded FM. Thanks to their many connections, a number of DJ’s and visual artists have all agreed to take part of the new platform – Q/LOUNGE. There is a website currently being developed and all the artists involved in the event will have a donation link, as the main aim of the project is to support creatives. I then decided due to the upcoming deadlines for this screen project, that I could create a promotional video for the Q/LOUNGE initiative. Using the skills I have developed throughout the duration of this project, I created a 1:20 promotional video, using found footage, GIF images, text, and sound. Although this wasn’t the exact result I was expecting, I will continue to pursue this endeavour, using the promotional video to build interest, enabling me to create more video projects, in which I can then use footage of users, and the artists who attend and perform at the Q/LOUNGE event.