Penelope hides under a table to sleep and dream. She hears the sound of the ocean in her min. Also, she hears a song. The voice comes from a powerful woman. Like her.
Penelope vanishes through columns that seem the mastyl of a boat that sails the brave oeans of the world. She wanders around like a ghost of herself reflecting and multiplying into double and triple Penelopes.
Penelope just makes coffee. She calmly takes the pot out of the cabin, purs water, and coffee. And then waits. When the noice calls her attention, she serves the coffee and drink it slowly looking at nowhere. Everyday.
Penelope is waiting. She looks out the balcony and expect the arrival of Ulysses. Feeling the breeze early in the morning brings a special feeling. In that very moment she believes that he will come real soon.
JUAN MANUEL NÚÑEZ
Penelope is Waiting is more than a portrait of a myth. It´s more than a moment to capture. It connects our silent inner life with the terrible sensation of solitude in modern or antique times –immutable for the human being through the existence. It speaks about that intense and painful sensation waiting for the loved one. That anxiety which, why not, may expand towards creativity.
Paloma Zavala performing Penelope sparks my creativity through the lens. She may project sadness, but makes me feel spiritual. Contemplating Penelope´s isolation has a lot of meaning to me as a state of mind attained in the complete absence of others. Just the two of us and the camera. The long absence was there before. She has its own inner Odyssey –fidelity, long chastity, and solitude. She is still waiting. That is what I have captured. JUAN MANUEL NUÑEZ
Juan Manuel Núñez is an airline captain who decided to change the course of his life. He studied Visual Arts and became an artist. He works on painting, sculpture, photography, and video. So, his aesthetical point of view, in constant development, is aerial.
He looks at life from the far away distance that comes from the experience of life in full. His art work represents what he is. A man rooted in the earth: powerful. And an independent soul that is always on the fly: spiritual.
From a very calculated distance, the architecture of his photos are subtle in composition and deep in evocative tones. To his eyes, Penelope is not waiting anymore. She has arrived to her destiny of love. PEDRO VALIENTE
JUAN JOSÉ TALAVERA
The music is created after two elements which are the videoinstallation Penelope is Waiting by Pedro Valiente and the song La lucha by the Mexican group Son de Madera.
These elements shape the tonal construction and its texture density as well as the tonal harmonic aspect.
The videoinstallation, projected on four screens, generates a contrasted tonal treatment in each screen –winds (two clarinets and accordion), strings (violin, viola, violoncello), and drums (two marimbas). In the fourth screen, the only musical part is the song performed by a female singer.
The four screens create an exchange of subtle and changing counterpoints provoking in the audience a stimulating game of sound stimulation linked to space.
Regarding to the song, its modal nature, featured in popular music, is colored by other instruments with different levels of harmonic tension to extract unexpected sound glitter ad flare.
There are two atmospheres clearly distinguished –until the song appears, it´s very static; after the song, the music is intense and progressively rhythmical toward a cathartic and release ending.
JUAN JOSÉ TALAVERA
JUAN JOSÉ TALAVERA composition and musical direction | DESISLAVA KARAMFILOVA violin | PETYA NIKOLOVA KAVALOVA viola | MARTA RAMOS CRIADO cello | MÓNICA CAMPILLO clarinet | ISRAEL MATESANZ bass clarinet | DAVID GORDO accordion | MIGUEL ÁNGEL PÉREZ, VERA GARRIDO marimbas | EDUARDO BURGOS sound mix
SON DE MADERA
The improvisatory, string-driven music of Veracruz called son jarocho has enjoyed several decades of major resurgence. Back-to-the-future recordings mix elder farmer and rancher musicians with the next generation of forward-looking innovators who comprise the group Son de Madera. Son de mi Tierra (They are from my land) burgeons with creativity and reverence for both the old and the new as it draws from rural roots to produce fresh interpretations of this popular Mexican regional music. [Smithsonian Institution]
Based in Veracruz, Mexico, and founded in 1992, Son de Madera´s core members are Ramón Gutiérrez, José T. Vega, and Rubí Oseguera. Ramón, based in Xalapa, leads the group, plays guitarra de son, and sings. José, son of elder master-musician Andrés Vega, lives in Tlacotalpan, plays jarana, harmonica, and sings. Rubí, from Minatitlán, is widely admired for her jaranero and footwork zapateado (footwalk), traditional dance styles. Several guest artists add sounds and sensibilities of both the avant-garde and the rear guard of son jarocho performance. Los Angeles-based Mexican American Juan Pérez adds a contemporary touch with its electric bass. Son de Madera has long been at the forefront of musical revitalization incorporating new sounds and styles.
One day Penelope wakes up and realizes that Ithaca is not real. She thought for years that it was the land where she belonged to. She believed that the island and herself were the same thing since Ulysses and Ithaca were one. She was Ulysses.
That morning she found out that the mountains and the horizon were created by her mind. She discovered that the trees in the garden didn´t depend on her watch to continue existing. Now, they were different, they were other trees. The same happened with all the objects at home –they were unrecognizable. Then, she was afraid of departing from life surrounded by that illogical sensation. Fear of stop being.
Do we create our own reality? Penelope enters a big room where she sees her image projected on four walls. She envisions herself waiting in Ithaca. She is aware of two realities –what she´s living and what she´s watching as spectator. She has to decide if embrace, in full heart, a new life of possibilities out of her control or return to the safety of her enclosure. Forever. PALOMA ZAVALA
Penelope performs Paloma. The symbol of love and fidelity embodies a young woman in Europe today. She is the queen of an empty house –steering the sky from the balcony, hiding bellow a table and dreaming a song, dissolving from herself through columns, making coffee. She also wanders around the hipster district in Madrid. And talk with her dog.
Like Penelope, she is fragile and transparent. And, like Penelope, she is a powerful woman. Making films means to me working with people. No matter how abstract is my thinking, and even my way of approaching visual arts, I always end up close to the spiritual side of life. This not only shapes the poetic style of my work but also inhabits the body of the story.
Paloma was a breaking point shooting the feature film You Are Mythical which is a bridge between young Europeans and classic myths. After her, we all wanted to spend our lonely times building ships in a never ending wait for Ulysses. After her, we also felt mythical. As everybody knows, it´s a feeling that only heroes can inspire in humans. PEDRO VALIENTE