La Passion de Simone is a collaboration with the Sydney Chamber Opera and serves as a meditation on the life of French philosopher, political activist and mystic Simone Weil. As Video Artist on the production, I worked closely with Imara Savage (Theatre Director) and Elizabeth Gadsby (Production Designer).
Throughout her life Weil had a profound empathy and sought to endure pain and hardship in order to better understand the suffering of others. At the age of 34 she starved herself to death in solidarity with the victims of World War II.
The video work takes form as an evolving visual gesture - the enduring image of rice falling. It's an image that embodies a multitude of narratives and meanings, from her endurance of suffering as a means to knowledge and transcendence, to her metaphysical philosophies of gravity and grace.
To create the work's principal image, soprano Jane Sheldon endured three tonnes of rice being dropped on her for over half an hour. The final 4K projected image was massive, at over 20 meters wide and 10 meters high. Ultimately the production received excellent reviews, including 4.5 stars from the Sydney Morning Herald.