Undead Matter #7 – Life at the Edges of Shifting Rhythms
Curated by Sophie J. Williamson, Undead Matter is a series of conversations about where life lies in the ever-turning matter of our universe as it rhythmically resurfaces over millennia. Traversing the slippery space between the organic and the non-organic, the conversations travel from remote Siberia tundra, where ancient creatures are emerging from the melting permafrost; to deep within the geological substrata of the ocean bed amongst the sludge of millennia-year-old slow-living microorganisms; and outwards to the celestial expanse of interstellar dust ripe with life- giving potential, and back again.
Undead Matter has emerged through intersecting discussions with artists, poets, dancers, writers and musicians, as well cryomicrobiologists, death doulas, palaeontologists, geologists, permafrost geographers, mineralogists, archaeoastronomers, woodworkers, quantum physicists, bondage masters, cryonics speculators, indigenous elders and others met along the way. Each offer their own perspective on our place within the infinite impermanence of life: past, present and possible. Each collaborator offers their own perspective on our place within the infinite impermanence of universal matter: past, present and possible.
In Undead Matter #7, artist and filmmaker, Shezad Dawood speaks with social and geopolitical anthropologist Mark Nuttall, who’s work is embedded in circumpolar rural communities, tracing the entanglements between climate change, extractive industries and identity of place. They discuss the accumulated residues, ecological cosmologies and shifting futures that have emerged from the deepest corners of the oceans, the icy subsurface and geological entanglements of Greenland’s complex landscapes and the lives they hold. Creation myths, told by Greenlandic storyteller Maria Kreutzmann, bubble up from the dark depths of the ocean and rub up against dramatic changes in the landscape throughout the past century.