Arthur Jafa

catalog

Well-known member
I had a really powerful reaction to it in the gallery. I felt I got an insight into the song that I wouldn't normally have. It made me feel very aware of how it was speaking of and to suffering.
Yeah it puts tingles down my back that song, especially the chance bits
 

catalog

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very interesting reading of alien:

The alien is a monster, but in my reading of it, I think the first time I saw it, I realised that I was that alien. You’ve got a company that’s out there mining, or whatever they’re supposed to be doing in space, and you’ve got two… it’s funny using this term in mixed company, but I have to because it’s the appropriate term – it’s two niggers. There’s the good nigger and the bad nigger. The good nigger is Yaphet Kotto, who works for the company, and the bad nigger is the alien. When they first start to confront this xenomorph, is when John Hurt is at the dinner table, eating, and he’s like, ‘I’m feeling fine’, and then suddenly he starts having this seizure until the alien, in its first permutated state, pops out of his chest. If you look closely, there’s this moment where the whole crew is pulling back, except for Yaphet Kotto, who’s pushing forward with a knife in his hand. I always felt that that moment, where the baby version of the alien and Yaphet Kotto are facing each other, is a moment of recognition. This was the brother who couldn’t be reasoned with; the brother who said, ‘No, I come to rape and pillage and procreate with you whether you want to or not.’ It’s a sort of primordial vision of Black people in a way.
 

catalog

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i like that he was born in tupelo and lived in clarksdale mississippi and he locates that area as the centre of the world. he's remade the world around where he is located in it. that's a good sign.
 

catalog

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Weird title though. What's that about? - "Love is the message" I get but don't know about the final sentence.
actually @DannyL i got this answer completely wrong the first time around - here's what he actually says:

The title is a conflation of two things. On the one hand, it’s a conflation of this song, ‘Love Is the Message’, which is a house music anthem by MFSB (Mothers Fathers Sisters Brothers), and a story by James Tiptree, who was really a woman: Alice Sheldon. I like to say she was the Jimi Hendrix of science fiction, because in the early ’70s, when James Tiptree’s first stories appeared, it just rocked everybody, but nobody knew her. She wrote a story called ‘Love is the Plan, the Plan is Death’, and in my mind, I enjoyed collapsing those two together. The story itself is told from the perspective of a male member of an alien species, who, while fulfilling his cultural prerogative, is consumed by his progeny. He gets eaten at the end of the story. The title is therefore bound up with certain ideas I have around sacrifice. If you think of Martin Luther King, people treat his death as if it was an accident; they don’t contend with the degree to which he knew it was likely he was going to die. He made a profound sacrifice. I’m very curious about this idea of what it means to sacrifice oneself to a notion, to an idea, particularly when that idea is bound up with Black people’s survival.
 

catalog

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This is quite interesting. They go to work on Steve Mcqueens '12 years a slave' which I'm no fan of, but their ranting critique signifies something deeper than their actual problems with the film. I think it's something to do with him being a brit maybe and coming and telling their story and doing it wrong.

 

catalog

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i cant remember which video it is but there's a good one where he's talking about the critical acclaim lauded upon 'love is the message...' and how everyone talks about it as a poetics of suffering and so on, its heartbreaking etc, but he says not a single critic ever compared it to something like bernini, and that what he was showing with the gyrating bodies was that theres a tradition going from classic renaissance / greco-roman sculpture through to footwork

bernini_giovanni_lorenzo_2.jpg


arthur-jafas-explosive-kanye-scored-opus-arrives-in-la-body-image-1491497932.jpg
 

catalog

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I've got a few of the other videos and they are all pretty good tbh, but love is the message is the single best thing I would say.
 

catalog

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hes done some stuff with tyler mitchell that looks interesting, but i find tyler mitchell a little bright
 

catalog

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So Im not sure of the chronology, but I think after he used kanyes tune Ultralight beam for 'love is the message...' , jafa suddenly found himself quite in demand... Jay Z got him in for an extended video for 4.44


You'll spot some of the same shots as are in love is the message, including that incredible sun, but there's loads of new ones and a sort of storyline, with the blank eyed woman and footworker sort of dancing together, although they barely acknowledge one another.

Jafa has said before how it piases him off no one sees the classical allusions in his videos, but in this one, it's sort of unmissable, cos he uses slow motion really well. So you can see Michael angel very easily.

And x-post with the invisibles thread, the woman in particular has this voodoo feel to her. So a fair bit to unpack.

Great video, this to me is a jafa work of art, rather than a Jay z music video.
 

catalog

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good interview this - from about 58:50 he's talking about why Basic Channel should make good dub music, why they would even be interested in that form.

He says it's because dub is (psychoanalytically) about things missing and is fundamental to the black experience, because people (slaves) would go missing all the time, with no explanation. And then he says that Germans would be into this because although the elements are different, the basic process of people going missing is also fundamental to the German experience.

I'm not sure he's right but I appreciate this way of thinking or trying to join the dots. He's trying to work out why they would be so into dub and comes up with an original reason for it.
 

suspended

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I'm not sure he's right but I appreciate this way of thinking or trying to join the dots. He's trying to work out why they would be so into dub and comes up with an original reason for it.
This is how I feel about most artists-as-theorists
 

suspended

Well-known member
There's a bit of this in the board's flair—what's surprising or exciting or riff-worthy gets top billing. Compare two other online communities I've spent time in—one is obsessed with building a map that best-fits the territory. The other, a bit like here, treats the interesting—the provocative, the thing that generates questions, instead of answering them—as more valuable than "mere" accurate description.

As James Murphy says, "Advantages to both!"
 
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