EMDR was produced by James T. Green and features C’ne Rohlsen. It airs for the first time here on Constellations.
Whenever I was alone, I always heard this internal monologue that was trying to take over. It almost was like my consciousness trying to break out. With this piece, I was trying to get down to the bottom of why I felt anxious in a world where it felt like I was losing control, either literally or conceptually.
Inspiring James in the world of sound and beyond:
Sharon Mashihi, Kaitlin Prest, Travis Scott, SoundCloud rappers, Four Tet, Rignam Wangkhang, Some Rap Songs by Earl Sweatshirt, Adrian Piper’s visual artwork, William Forsythe’s movement work, the writing and visual projects of Jenny Odell.
In a medium where the unfurling of an idea is often synthesised and made neatly linear, James T. Green’s piece offers a welcome unending. In perfect tense, “I’ve always felt this need for control”, is a musical refrain with a psychoanalytic spike. The ‘cut ins’ of conversation between James and another person who, from his explainer we learn is his partner, are positioned above a muffled or partially muted version of the motif. These intimate exchanges are the pleasureable and painful working-it-through of togetherness, the reaching for mutual understanding while doing the mundane stuff of sharing a life, like the dishes.
Is to be in control not to speak of control? And so, is to speak of control to talk it away? Perhaps like liquid, control is temporarily holdable but not graspable and so James’ repetition is an attempt and reattempt to hang on.
American novelist and essayist Leslie Jamison describes crafting the first person of her work as a ‘throwing her voice across vast distances’ to bridge that gap between writing what you know and writing the story. James T. Green’s ‘throw’ is taut and economical. Here is perhaps a questioning of whether ‘to know thyself’ is to remove oneself, to push that feeling-self into the background. Which, I guess is another type of journey.
James T. Green (he/they) is an audio documentarian by trade and an artist by practice. They are the founder of Molten Heart, a creative studio in Brooklyn, New York. Their works have been featured in places such as the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Mass MoCA, 99% Invisible, and Pop Up Magazine.