One of my very favorite animations, Tusalava, was created by New Zealand artist and animation pioneer Len Lye. Originally silent, this version has been re-scored by Allessandro di Paola. Works well silent or with music, but stay with it. The ten minute slow-moving meditation on abstract almost cellular forms is quite moving.
“Unfolding in extreme slow motion, Tusalava depicts the emergence of two opposing figures from a striated matrix of dot-like configurations, most likely inspired by Australian Aboriginal art. Later in life, Lye described one of the figures, which is vaguely humanoid, as a “totem of individuality” and the other, which is wormlike, as a “witchetty grub,” an important Aboriginal food source he had never seen but was the subject of a dance he admired featuring sinuous writhing movements akin to those he made use of in his film. Throughout Tusalava’s ten- minute duration, the witchetty grub invades its totemic counterpart with a pair of tentacular protrusions, struggling to absorb it in its entirety before being thrust aside by the totem’s last-gasp explosive death throes.” Luke Smythe, Len Lye: the Vital Body of Cinema,OCTOBER 144, Spring 2013, pp. 73–91. © 2013 October Magazine, Ltd. and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. retrieved from http://www.mitpressjournals.org, January 26th, 2015