Anne Milne 24 October 2016

Space, Time And Little Creatures


My films seek to understand the human condition. From looking into the furthest reaches of the universe to scanning the white matter of the brain, I’m fascinated with the big questions which help us to recognize who we are, where we are at this moment in time, and where we are heading.

Into Deep Space is an exploration into the work of two scientists whose work is involved with the search for exoplanets – planets which are outside of our own solar system. They seek to find similarities to our own blue planet and discover whether or not we are as unique and alone as we seem to be. The scientists involved in ​The Living Brain are looking inside rather than outside to find out what happens to us as we age, and how we can prevent diseases such as dementia from forming.

This longitudinal study uses data which was created back when the subjects were children. Like the astronomers, they are looking back in time to investigate the future. While these films include the scientists as they undertake their research, my goal is to create a visual language around the subject matter, to engage the audience beyond the details of the science.  In the case of ​The Living Brain, the actual subjects of the research play a major role; with ​Into Deep Space​, I wanted to create an imaginary sense of what life could be like on another planet.

This fantasy-like thread continues with Invasion, a fantastical, other worldly journey of an invented, mysterious thing which has come to Earth looking for a host. Macro, micro, natural, artificial, inside, outside. Invasion is an investigation into the lives of pathogens, bacteria, parasites and other creatures, but not in the way you’d expect. From the air to the lab, we are brought into a world that is claustrophobic and at times frightening. Who is being looked at? What is being seen? The same scientists involved in this research into infectious diseases are the subject of ​Scientists Under the Microscope, where the camera is turned directly onto them, as people. Who are they? How do they feel to be scrutinized as closely as they scrutinize their ​ subjects?

These works in total are part of a continuum, as my investigations go on. My collaborations with scientists have helped me to form ideas and create a map of humanity which in turn has informed my non-scientific work, films which also draw upon my quest for answers in the realm of the psyche.

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