Sweet Ice

ACID, New York, NY

Photography by Walter Wlodarczyk

Video by Adrien de Monès

Through the course of Sweet Ice there is a loose narrative involving a lone figure performing with a block of ice reminiscent of a burial slab. Both the ice and floral arrangement allude to traditions of the preservation of bodies and the masking of decomposition. The performer’s role in the storyline evokes multiple beings existing between realms.The figure is simultaneously in a state of mourning and transcendence; they are the body of the dead, the body of the living left behind, and the body of a new form emerging.

The performance is marked by a haunting score featuring distortions of found music. "The Harp of Oberon" by Mark Bettenberg introduces the piece. Oberon is the king of the fairies who in William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream is engaged in a dispute over a child with his wife Titania. "The Children's Theme" composed by John Berry from Nicolas Roeg's Walkabout continues the score. The inclusion of this song is a nod to the film's depiction of loss, transformation and on the nature of finding joy amid chaos and pain.

The performance culminates in a rendition of the welsh lullaby Suo Gan, as performed by James Rainbird and the Ambrosian Junior Choir. I cradle a small block of ice and gild it in gold. I rock the ice to the lullaby, enfolding the ice in my arms, protecting the child surrogate and illuminating it with the foil.

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