Sriwhana Spong speaks about her project 'castle-crystal' which forms part of our 2019 Commissions Programme 'Stories for an Uncertain World'.
Spong is interested in the relationship between the body and language. Her new film 'castle-crystal' begins with the writings of the 16th century mystic St Teresa of Avila (the subject of feminist Julia Kristeva’s novel 'Teresa: My Love'), whose book 'The Interior Castle' imagines a castle-crystal, a fictional space that gives Teresa the courage to write. Spong is interested in how Teresa’s imaginary castle creates a free space for the imagination and discourse, and offers an image of a vast interiority, a space in which women can authorise their own speaking.
The idea of text as architecture or architecture as text, is further explored in relation to a 12th century Javanese poem, the Bhomāntaka, alongside the personal tale of a family bathroom. The film traces these intimate dwellings to consider fictional spaces as important sites for sparking visions of possible futures and future bodies.
Commissioned with Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. Supported by the PLACE Programme, a partnership between Edinburgh Festivals, Scottish Government,
City of Edinburgh Council and Creative Scotland. With additional support from Creative New Zealand, Institut français d’Ecosse and Museums & Galleries Edinburgh.
Videographer: Rachel McBrinn.