Instinctive, Painted Dance

A woman, a crow, and a building in decay are the principal characters in Painted, a dance short that features some beautiful moments with its exploration of movement in relation to site. It made the dance film festival circuit about two years ago, was awarded Best Dance Film at the 2012 Fastnet Short Film Festival, and also screened at Dance Camera West on a year when it seemed that every other dance film short submitted was shot on location at a building in ruin.

Dorotea Saykaly as seen through several floors in Painted
Dorotea Saykaly as seen through several floors in Painted

Painted by Duncan McDowall is the first in a trilogy of dance shorts, of which I have also seen the second, Brief Candle, and both of these seem to thematically explore the notion of decay and or the transience of the physical world in relation to nature. The dancer/choreographer of both films, Dorotea Saykaly, is strong, beautiful, and instinctive in her movement, and Painted features an original score by Simon Marcheterre and compelling cinematography by Cristophe Collette. While I like the juxtaposition of the dancer with the crow (or is it a raven?) I particularly like the shots through doorways and overhead in the stairwell, and that the building itself has an ominous and sad kind of presence that really functions like a character within the context of the short as a whole. Enjoy.

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Top: Image from the Painted dance video

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