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About Numinous Pools by Rachel Poonsiriwong

Numinous Pools is a group exhibition surfacing ritualistic practices and alternative temporalities in film and video art from around the Great Lakes. In metaphorizing the Great Lakes’ formative processes, this single-channel exhibition is inspired by how time has animated the melting of this region’s ecologies and histories into fluid wholeness. The artists featured in Numinous Pools use experimental moving image projects to reflect on their cultural backgrounds and numinous realities in contrast to dominant Western values.

This exhibition centers ritual and myth to explore notions of nonlinear time, and to subvert existing ontological delineations between human and nature. Artist Jacklyn Das, based in Rochester, employs an ever-evolving filmmaking practice to unearth dream-induced memories of ritual in Members Only. In Petal to the Metal, Ontario-based Emily Pelstring reflects on botanical animism of the region’s biodiversity through hand-processed film and foraged flora. In an adjacent vein, Brooklyn-based Lili Chin’s Jona Dove explores intersecting emotions between man and mammal through archival processes and mythic inspiration (‘Jonah and the Whale’). For Numinous Pools, ritual and myth are shamans—excavating and animating moving images out of light purgatory.

Beyond spirituality, Numinous Pools leans into sensorial archeology to study the temporal and experiential landscapes afforded by film moving images. This show pays homage to Deleuzian assemblage theory to posit video itself as “rhizome” where sequence, sound and image commingle to forge meaning in their liminalities. Effervescing off Hamilakis’ extension of Deleuze and Guattari, coined the “sensorial assemblage”, Numinous Pools researches how materiality in the moving image engenders–endures–encodes time and memory.

-Rachel Poonsiriwong

This text accompanies the exhibition Numinous Pools.