Spirit Labour

Adrian Heathfield and Hugo Glendinning

What kind of labour is it, to work communally with the bodies, movements, expressions and affects of others, to dedicate ones lifework to the othering that issues from these relations? Is a life, especially a life spent making, learning, giving and transforming oneself with others, a kind of infrastructure? How might we better understand and value the social and artistic force of such practices? In this visual essay, Glendinning and Heathfield follow the creative practice of sculptor and performance artist Janine Antoni: her collaborations and conversations with the choreographer Anna Halprin and the writer Hélène Cixous.

These questions form the core of Adrian Heathfield and Hugo Glendinning’s new film, which traces and connects some exemplary artistic figures of the late twentieth and early twenty-first century, whose art practice escapes identitarian culture by being tuned to a set of barely visible, relational and dispersed activities. Spirit Labour traces a genealogy of creative practices inclined to elemental exposure and non-human forces, as renewals of the passage of humans toward their outsides.

Featuring: Janine Antoni, Anna Halprin, Hélène Cixous
Directed and Edited by Hugo Glendinning and Adrian Heathfield
Original Music and Violin by Aisha Orazbayeva
George Philipp Telemann, Fantasie No. 10 for Violin Solo, Largo, performed by Aisha Orazbayeva
Voice: Sophie Gueydon
Camera: Hugo Glendinning
Text: Adrian Heathfield