Haal
by Nitin Mukul

2012

Single channel video, duration: 25 minutes

Edition of 5 with digital C print on rag paper + 2 artist proofs

Haal is the 5th in a series of video works which have been ongoing since 2008.

In this series, Mukul explores the boundaries that normally separate the

mediums of painting and video and expands the parameters of each.

These works are paintings in a frozen state, which are then allowed to melt and disintegrate.

The process of the painting's disintegration is recorded in video. While there is a degree of pre-meditation in making the painting, the process of disintegration and its visual register over an unfixed passage of time is subject to forces beyond the artist's control. The work is informed by an awareness of the Hindu Shaivite concept of creation and destruction being intertwined, as well as the aesthetic philosophies of artists such as Robert Smithson, Stan Brakhage, Andy Goldsworthy, and others embracing the notion of transience and integrating process.

The title 'Haal' is a Sufi term referring here to a temporary trance like state of expanded consciousness and lucidity induced by fixating on a process that is at once cataclysmic and sublime.

For Haal, Jace Clayton (DJ Rupture) composed and performed the score, one of the first using

Sufi Plug Ins, a set of software tools he developed which explore non-western & poetic

notions of sound in interaction with alternative interfaces. They create a space where software design, music tools, encoded spirituality, digital art, and indigenous knowledge systems overlap.

Sufi Plug Ins v1.0 is a suite of seven free audio software tools, including include four distinct synthesizers hardwired to North African & Arabic maqam scales with quartertone tuning built-in, a device called Devotion which lowers your computer’s volume 5 times a day during call to prayer (presets include Agnostic, Fervent, Devout), and a drone machine. The interface is written in the Berber language of Tamazigh, using their neo-Tifinaght script. Roll-over info texts provide fragments of Sufi poetry.

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