Is the sun rising or setting? I can’t tell (2020)  

The film’s title comes from a poem written in the summer of 2017, around the time I was also recording the footage:

I have never
felt better.
I have never
felt worse.
When the frogs go silent.

Mind on a dime, my
crisis consciousness
in guilty contradiction.

Is she rising or setting?
I can’t tell.

I close my eyes,
face to sky,
and I am in those
blue-grey clouds,
beamed back down
in seconds.

Is the sun rising or setting? I can’t tell is a meditation on moments past and transformed over time and in memory. Reflections in the water are constantly shifting, dispersing and coming together again, like memories that surface, with some details lost and others exaggerated.

The film reveals a dreamscape. In this place, I am surrounded by water. Time has become distorted: reversed, slowed, and non-linear. Like the reflections, it is amorphous.

The window signifies a return to the waking realm; the world in which forms take shape. Here, movement ceases. Aside from the tremble of my hand, the scene is inanimate, its contents entirely manmade. The moon symbolizes the idea that the dreamscape and the physical world are deeply interwoven.

I improvised the music, with the help of my banjo, a contact mic, and three pedals: a loop station, pre-amplifier, and Electro-Harmonix Grand Canyon.