the Dark Rift
We are pleased to present the final video in our series spotlighting the work of Michael Betancourt.
the Dark Rift is a 2 minute movie produced from a mixture of archival footage and a NASA video of the Moon rotating, synchronized with music by composer Dennis H. Miller, who also produces visual music animations. The title for this movie is a reference to Maya mythology. They believed the “Dark Rift,” a group of interstellar dust clouds that divide the bright band of the Milky Way galaxy lengthwise, and whose alignment with the Sun marks the winter solstice on Earth, was the road to the underworld. Moon imagery demonstrates this fantasy::reality dynamic throughout my work. The multiple windows and glitches appearing throughout this movie appear not as interruptions, but as shifts in resolution. It is only at the end when an astronomical photograph of the Dark Rift begins to appear ‘behind’ the Moon that these windows become physically present as layers of image—it is through the shifting relationship they have to the black areas on screen that they become physical. This change in perception is a shift between abstraction (the windows as glitched parts of the image) and realism (layers lying in front of a more distant background).