Klammern aus denen Blätter sprießen
This was never meant to be a script. It was never meant to be a script for a film or a TV show, or a play or an exhibition. It was never a screenplay. But there was a splinter of reality in which one could have argued that it was, and so another version would look a little like this:
1 EXT. PICO BLVD
No beauty for the profane. In mathematical operations, brackets determine the order of those operations, meaning brackets are algorithmic devices. When brackets are nested, the rule is that you must work from the inside out. Some birds work differently, often dropping stuff into a chosen tree, relying on spider silk and saliva to make it stick. As we know, trees grow leaves, but so do brackets. At least that is one possible scenario in the not-so-distant future.
2 INT. TRIANGULATION OF POINTS ON THREE WALLS
Saturn devours his son and a symbiotic organism poses as a drawing. It sits inside a frame made from T-Slot aluminium profiles and acrylic matting. When the brain starts making sounds and the waves that move through air stop making sense, you know it’s not you but the world that’s gone mad.
FRAME (starts an internal dialogue with its post-metabolic pellicle gut)
You can force some substances to melt by placing them in a crucible. Others remain defiant. For example, the substance of symbiosis and the system of cost-to-benefit might appear to be connected, but only so by a metaphorical trick: Control the body, invent the mind.
Something starts to move through the grooves of the framework: a viral medium undergoing mutation. The unconscious feeds the reasonless hand with automatic patterns just as images train algorithmic networks.
Nothing to decypher. No enigma to resolve today or any other day. Everything boils down to pressure and time.
3 INT. LEFT WALl - CENTRE
Most people prefer to keep their place of work physically separated from their place of sleep. It’s nothing particularly auratic. Why would it be? Without training, no body accustomed to the gravity of Earth could survive in outer space. It takes time to come to terms with any ecology, that is the domesticated logic of space. So now, as the distance between the bed and the desk has shrunk to 0 on all coordinates (X,Y,Z,t), all that’s left are questions and hypothetical answers.
LEFT MONITOR (radiating light waves down from above)
Leave society, leave all of it behind? The imperative to not sleep where you eat or not to eat where you fuck or not to play where you work or to chat while you’re lying on top of this mattress sweating from the tunnels of heat escaping your graphics cards through softline hydroloop tubing fans spinning frantically. So do your thoughts. They start biting their own toes. And their tailends curl up to reach through your nostrils. Are you dreaming yet or were you ever even awake?
While some expect the delivery of a commodity, others expect the delivery of a bed. Though the bed does sleep a force of life as commodity form, that is the force of labour, and so it also sleeps the engine of a waking dream, the defiant construct of the brain: No world but for the living, nothing but a world of chains waiting to be cut loose.
4 INT. OTHER TRIANGULATION OF POINTS ON THREE WALLS
Cave entrances can’t physically cross international borders and so they transmute into windows. Windows populated by air bubbles and tiny hills. Windows that receive information: No signal. Windows that fold out into maps: Not here. Windows that slice space: Discretely nowhere. Unfortunately, it’s not advised to eat them.
SENSORIUM (freshly risen from the grid)
Remember those giant orifices, teeming with alchemical branches, self-generating codes, mutant landscapes?
Everything you see hanging vertically now also saw the light of day lying on an operating table. Their soft sulphate mineral bodies so dry, if you’d eject a pool of spit on them, they’d soak them up instantly, like a drop of sweat rolling off the forehead of a desert wanderer losing itself in the heat before it reaches the ground.
A common misunderstanding is that one can’t cut (with) paint. These organisms spread out in space prove you can: particles suspended in a liquid substance are applied to coat the gypsum body board, layer upon layer deposited, forming sediments. A sharpened tool slides into these sediments, turning time into a grid, imitating the process of etching copper trails onto a circuit board.
When water flows onto dry sand during an incoming tide, the water seeps down through the grains and forces air trapped among the grains to percolate upward. Small bubbles coalesce as they come in contact with one another, becoming larger entities as they move upward.
Oh! A living organism has spilled out from the ground, hope no one minds.
5 INT. RIGHT SIDE WALL
Two vertical lock rods which normally enable doors to open, close and lock have no doors to open, close or lock. Instead, they are lifting up a screen. Inside the screen, you see a shipping container floating on the surface of the ocean. Waves start to consume it, drawing it all the way down to the bed of the sea.
There are about 5-6 million, if not more, shipping containers being hauled across the surface of the ocean at this very moment. Once an hour, one of them makes an escape, perhaps because a bracket has loosened its hold, and falls into the ocean.
CONTAINER (to the snails, tunicates, hermit crabs, scallops and tubeworms)
Make a nest of my tears. Prove the ability of the living to transcend their own death.
Like brackets or containers, a capsule encloses something. It preserves what it contains in a stable environment by cutting it off from another. It remains to be seen whom or what this tendency serves. When you escape fear, you escape hope.
Why are you so afraid of the horizon?
6 INT. CENTRE BACK
Somewhere full metal flesh bodies - resurrected from a sleeping stockpile of industrial debris - have finally been laid to rest. They emit a low frequency hum. This hum consists of a leading voice and a chorus that follows.
Alive! Still Alive!
The chorus needs some time to overcome its feeling of estrangement.
Oh, the joy of working on a warm body.
Oh, the joy of working on a warm body.
Limbs organise Anotherself. No spilled organs this time, just the heart transplant of an engine sloshing in electric brine.
Science is nothing but trash before a dream.
CHORUS (dissociating from the voice)
Oh, the joy of trashing science for the sake of the machine.
7 EXT. LEIPZIGER STRASSE
A group of objects were once installed as static scenery. They set the stage behind a glass fibre bodyshell. Some were as tall as a human figure, others large enough to enclose one, some smaller than the average human head; one of these objects consisted of a body so flat, some people would call it ‘immaterial’, of course we know no such thing exists.
Brackets are symbols that wrap around words, phrases or sentences in a piece of writing. They mark what should be considered a separate organ to the main body of text. Most machinic screen readers will gloss over them, meaning a. they will just leave the brackets including their contents out, or b. they will read the contents without hinting to the existence of the brackets, all that (in text) is hugged in by the brackets then swims (in speech) in the same soup as the remaining text.
It’s not just machines though, because a human translator from text to speech encounters the same issue. [To open and close brackets, or not to open or close brackets? (In speech, that is.)]
The attentive reader will notice that this was not the attempt to draw a full circle but to trace the outlines of this story’s “Element X”.
Once you’ve made a gateway of brackets, slipping into the embrace between them, you unlock the control console and peer into its memory slot. There. Expect a beautiful but unreal setting.
— Steph Holl-Trieu