In the Year of The Quiet Sun

In the Year of The Quiet Sun

In the Year of The Quiet Sun

33 min 57 sec
Single Channel Video
UK, 2013

The essay film In the Year of the Quiet Sun (2013) takes its name from the decrease in solar surface temperature that occurs every eleven years. From November 1964 to November 1965, the nation states of the world issued postage stamps to commemorate the first scientific expedition to study the sun. As the stamps turned their face towards the sky, they overlooked the unstable land of Africa’s newly independent states.

The works created for In the Year of the Quiet Sun operate as peculiar anomalies that seek to summon forces of indexicality and iconicity from the aspirations, alibis and abuses of sovereignty that emerge in the fields of postal politics, imperial infrastructure and magazine diplomacy.

If the founding of the Universal Postal Union in Bern in 1874 can be understood as the instituting of imperial infrastructure then Rene de Saint-Marceaux’s 1907 monument to the UPU stands as the first attempt to visualise global communication. Conceived by The Otolith Group and animated by ScanLab, Sovereign Sisters (2014) mobilises Saint Marceaux’s monument into a digital hymn to the automatism of planetary infrastructure.

The Otolith Group

Established in 2002 by Anjalika Sagar and Kodwo Eshun who live and work in London, United Kingdom. They have just finished an solo exhibition called In The Year of The Quiet Sun in Casco, Utrecht,The Netherland. They have done countless history research and transforming them into medium, particularly essay-film and working closely with other artists including, Chris Marker, Black Audio Film Collective, and Harun Farocki. They also publish critics on visual cuture and contemporary art.