For the release of their second album “Daha Uzak” (Further Away), Yerçekimi (Gravity), a band from İstanbul, wanted to enhance the hypnotic and ritualistic aspects of their music with visuals that would stay coherent throughout the whole album. They felt that satellite images of alien-like landscapes from around the world matched the overall atmosphere of the music perfectly. Thus, they created a website where slowly panning maps and simple procedural animations for the lyrics would accompany the music.
When Things Occur is based on Skype conversations with Gaza inhabitants who were behind the images that were transmitted from screen to screen in the summer of 2014. The film probes the face of mourning and grief—its digital embodiment, transmission, and representation. It asks how the gaze gets channeled within the digital realm, and how empathy travels. What exactly is viewing suffering ‘at a distance’? What is the behavior and political economy of the image of war? And who is the ‘local’ in the representation of war?