Saudade da Gaia

“Physically and metaphysically, this landscape echoes the deep emotional state of melancholic longing when you lose something you love. Echoes in your heart yearning for what once was.” Set in the mysterious, abandoned Soviet town Pyramiden, this short film captures the return of one of its inhabitants, Natalya, to her once thriving home town after 20 years. Her feelings of Soviet nostalgia, yearning for a lost sister, and overwhelming melancholy on return to a place so lost are crafted into a Russian poem. Beautifully captured by Australian photographer and director Jonathan May and Liza Boston, this story couldn’t be told in a more engaging way.

The poem, written by Liza Boston, is set to my composition Saudade de Gaia.


This video is a collaboration between composer Joep Beving and director Supreet Kaur. Composed in isolation that was forced upon many, it perfectly captures a message of contemplation and hope. About the piece Joep says “Solitude is a piece I wrote a couple of days before Piano Day in solitude in my response to this global crisis, I hope you will enjoy it. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who finds her,- or himself at the dark end of this pandemic. Let’s hope that when we get through this, we will see some form of global change. I’m very hopeful for the future in that sense. Be well, be safe, be healthy. “ Beving and Kaur met by chance over the internet, no doubt lead by the inevitability of their individual works coming together, as both the film in a preliminary form and the music were created at around the same date, in different parts of the world, without prior knowledge nor contact. Beving: “There’s a unique situation of the world being forced to stay home. Together in solitude. So much contained energy, where does it all go? Much of it hopefully will go into introspection, creativity and problem solving. If we can’t physically be together maybe now is the time for our thoughts to be. Ideas want to travel to find their ultimate manifestation. Perhaps these circumstances will prove to be the fertile soil for a much needed renaissance.”

Directors Statement: These are indeed strange times, and I caught myself oscillating between hope and despair. Which if not expressed, may have rotted at the core. So I started filming. Isolation can be home to a mood of many kinds. This video somehow reminds us of those nostalgic musings, those hours of longing to meet the one person you haven’t yet. Those nights filled with ache and wonder alike. Where the mind swims out into the ocean treading hills and seas to find itself right back where it started. A longing. ‘Solitude’ – reminds me of a day without a hug. Call it fate or the most random assimilation of improbable algorithms, but this collaboration with Joep just feels right. As Joep has rightly observed, the arts are truly at danger but it also feels like the brink of a renaissance, of sorts. And there would be no way to celebrate the new world, or even just come to terms with it, by creating. Together. I find so many minute details of our daily life, all with so much significance now, which may have very well gone unnoticed for a lifetime. This film for me is something that people may relate to in an urban jungle like Mumbai, but also in the sparse drylands of Iceland. Because, at its essence, the film is about the human need for love, filmed from a perspective in Urban isolation.

Supreet Cheetah is a dynamic young writer-director from India. She is part of the powerhouse creative collective, Jugaad Motion Pictures. Jugaad is known for their clutter-breaking music videos and feature films. They have been regarded by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the front runners for the music video format in India. They have a combined viewership of over 200 million people across their films on various platforms. Supreet was born and brought up in the tiny sleepy town of Jalandhar in the far north of India. She developed an interesting perspective of the world with a sublime sense of aesthetics. She started out as a graphic designer/illustrator, and that discipline carried forward into the cinematic arts.

Joep Beving – Henosis & Anamnesis (Film by Michaël I. Sewandono)

On top of a table lies a heap of sand, millions of tiny grains, all different. A man methodically moves small batches from one side to the other. He is concentrated, almost meditative. The mountain in front of him seems to shaped intentionally and with every movement sand falls through the fissures and gaps of the table, but these disturbances leave no trace. “I wanted to create something that connects with the idea of Joep Beving’s new album: unity as the goal of all things and the idea of a presence of something larger, that we are all part of a constant movement, where nothing endures. Shot in three parts of the world, the film follows the fractured narrative of a metaphysical entanglement with nature and the experience of a connection between lives. It tells the story of a kindred spirit in time, seen through the eyes of multiple characters that aren’t aware they are mimicking each other thousands of miles apart. But they all share that inner voice, that innate knowledge that people possess. And they feel this pure and intimate reminiscence of their place in this world.” (Michaël Sewandono).


This video is a collaboration between composer Joep Beving and artist Floris Schönfeld and is the first in a sequel of two films depicting respectively the micro- and macro cosmos. Both films were extracted from a larger body of work: the video installation NATURA*Body by Floris Schönfeld. Both artists were re-introduced to each other after their mutual involvement in the filmproject Henosis-Anamnesis by Michael Sewandono. A film inspired on the album Henosis by Joep Beving, for which the journey outwards and inwards (macro and micro) formed the main inspiration.

The images are fragments from the video installation NATURA* Body by Floris Schönfeld… NATURA* Body is part of a larger project which chronicles the story of NATURA*, an all-encompassing artificial super-intelligence that has managed to become synonymous with the natural world. The work was shot at Trumbull Studio’s and uses analogue visual effects techniques pioneered in the 1960s in such films as 2001: a Space Odyssey to suggest a new morphogenesis, one in which the digital and natural become indistinguishable. Carrying in the tradition of these speculative future-oriented films, the project attempts the seemingly impossible task of stepping out of our own human perspective.

Produced during a residency at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten with support from the Mondriaan Fonds and the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.

Special thanks to Floris Schönfeld, John Treffer, John Hobart-Culleton and  Trumbull Studio’s.

Prehension. A film.

I met Rahi Rezvani by chance some years ago. Little did I know then that this encounter would result in the great collaboration we have today. It is a privilege to work with someone who manages to translate my musical world into images and stories so seamlessly. Please enjoy his beautiful film and give it a second viewing if your day allows for it. A special thank you to Meng-ke Wu and Marne van Opstal for giving us their wonderful performance and personalities! And of course to the rest of the team making over hours on this one, many many thanks!