This commission, a short film called The Andes call him from the couch, is a creative collaboration between poet and prose writer Donal Conaty, who was writer-in-residence at The Dock in 2021/22, and audio-visual artist Eva Martin.
Donal and Eva first worked together when they made The Sky’s A Lie, a poetry film where Eva interpreted a number of Donal’s poems. The Sky’s A Lie was supported by The Dock through Arts Council Faoin Spéir funding.
Their second film is drawn from Donal’s prose work Splintered, a novella which Donal worked on at The Dock in 2021/22, and which is a third-person narrative composed of the disjointed thoughts of a bewildered man. His thoughts teeter between insightful and absurd as he contemplates all aspects of what life is and what it could be. The work eschews much of the exposition and plotting of conventional storytelling to deliver an intimate portrait of the central character.
The pair have selected a fragment of Splintered that explores the multiplicity of the self and are adapting it to make The Andes call him from the couch. In the text, the protagonist questions whether he has been his right self in this life and wonders how many other, potentially better, selves are waiting to be unleashed. He considers the life of birds and speculates that he could be an Andean condor or a swift though he suspects the reality is less glamorous.
The finished film will be shown at The Dock on Culture Night 2023.