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A Score for the Secretome (2020) and The Haunted Pond (2020-2022)

In collaboration with Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.) and the Welcome to the Secretome Project.

Video Stills from The Haunted Pond by Jill R Baker

The Haunted Pond (A Secretome Score), is an experimental score set in a video that gathers from a multi-seasonal performance and intergenerational collaboration located in a small pasture at the Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.) in Philomath, Oregon. In the midst of uncertain times and terrains, these playful encounters become the structure for graphic scores, grounded in lived experiences of time and change within places we care for.

The collaboration began in May 2020, during the early pandemic lockdown when artist Jill R Baker and child, Fox participated in the ongoing Welcome to the Secretome project in the wildly green spring pasture. Allowing Fox’s playful exploration to generate instructions for a sequence of play actions, Jill created a written score for the Secretome. Over the changing seasons and weathers, smoke and fog, and watersheds rising and fading, this artist team has continued to engage and perform the score and maps of the Secretome together in different ways with special attention and attraction to the small excavated pond in the middle of the pasture.

Welcome to the Secretome (2016 – present) is a collaborative, interdisciplinary project cultivated by Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.) artist Karin Bolender (she/we/they) that proposes experimental methods for co-composing stories with/in hidden ecological energies, both familiar and sub-visible. The basic choreography of Welcome to the Secretome invites participants to explore dynamic ecologies of specific living places in new ways, through images of microscopic microbial cultures gathered within them. These mysterious images become both portals and “treasure maps” that lead deeper into places’ hidden layers. These adventures can take place over hours, days, weeks, or, in the case of this special score, nearly two years and counting. . . .

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