Can You Sense It? Conversation with Bridget Reweti and Tamika Galanis
What are you sensing, around the political and public health disasters and through a year of virtual connections? Can you sense around and through disaster? What does your body feel? Where does your mind take you? Have you had extrasensory experiences lately? Are you connecting to other worlds and your communities beyond screens?
“Can You Sense It?,” programmed by guest curator Jacqui Brown for Los Angeles Filmforum, deeply engages the work of two filmmakers - Bridget Reweti and Tamika Galanis - to pull you through your screens and drop you beyond this global pandemic to connect deeply to what it is that only you can sense. The works presented exist between the possibilities of film, grounded in land and place and people overlooked, placing nonfiction film in service of embodiment. They sever the connection between image and dialogue, facilitating the transfer of your energy away from your screen to your senses and the vibrations of land, place, and connections.
Bridget Reweti suffuses the Aotearoan landscape with voices, mythologies, and communality to dispel romantic notions of the “natural world” and close the gap between our natural and lived environments.
Tamika Galanis reverses Reweti’s circulation of life to landscape, placing the outdoors in service of archiving Bahamian interiority. Tamika places herself in an unenviable race - capturing what is The Bahamas, as her home, known as “The Ephemeral Islands,” is actually disappearing.
Bridget Reweti (she/her’s) is an artist and curator from Ngāti Ranginui and Ngāi Te Rangi in Tauranga Moana, Aotearoa. Her lens-based practice practice explores indigenous landscape perspectives and the intricacy of contemporary Māori realities. Bridget has held numerous residencies both nationally and internationally and her work is held in both private and public collections, she is the 2020-21 Frances Hodgkins Fellow at Otago University.
Bridget is part of Mata Aho Collective, a collaboration between four Māori women artists who produce large scale textile works, commenting on the complexity of Māori lives. Bridget has a vested interest in making space from governance to operations to audience for Māori to feel safe and brave in the arts. She has curated both solo and group shows throughout Aotearoa and also co-editor of ATE Journal of Māori Art, an annual peer-reviewed journal of Māori Art. Bridget holds a Masters with first class honours in Māori Visual Arts from Toioho ki Āpiti, Massey University and a PgDip in Museum and Heritage Studies from Victoria University of Wellington. www.bridgetreweti.com
Tamika Galanis is a documentarian and multimedia visual artist. A Bahamian native, Tamika’s work examines the complexities of living in a place shrouded in tourism’s ideal during the age of climate concerns. Emphasizing the importance of Bahamian cultural identity for cultural preservation, Tamika documents aspects of Bahamian life not curated for tourist consumption to intervene in the historical archive. This work counters the widely held paradisiacal view of the Caribbean, the origins of which arose post-emancipation through a controlled, systematic visual framing and commodification of the tropics.
Tamika’s photography-based-practice includes traditional documentary work and new media abstractions of written, oral, and archival histories. Hacking the Narrative is a multimedia project composed of photographs, film, and sculptural objects that shed light on the conditions in which Bahamians live outside of the mythical promise of paradise. Tamika is based in Durham, North Carolina where she earned a Masters of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts from Duke University. www.tamikagalanis.com/