The contemplative films by Morgan Quaintance create a distinct thread through time and history, addressing racial questions, multiracial identity, memory and its loss. ‘Once you can speak, you can learn to sing’, says a black choir teacher in the film South. Her words ring poignantly in a period of racialised subjects still fighting for the right to speak, a cultural condition often reflected in the films by the artist.
Quaintance, who is also a writer, musician, broadcaster and curator, has cultivated the participatory and political potential of contemporary art. His films are often gentle and sensitive, which is sometimes the most powerful way to speak about important subjects. In his films, Quaintance touches the viewer sorely, yet at the same time there is a strong sense of brightness, of possibility for a change that is so necessary.
In the context of the Videograms programme this year, we cherish the cinematographic language of the artist as a unique way of talking and writing about history through moving images that are brave in their poetic character, yet resolute in tackling urgent matters.
- Curated by Monika Lipšic