Brian Butler’s collaboration with actress Paz de la Huerta, “Babalon Working” premiered last month at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) here in Los Angeles. It was shot on location in Prague at the site where sixteenth-century alchemist Edward Kelly worked the Enochian system of magick. Blondie’s Chris Stein provided the no-wave synthesizer soundtrack.
“It’s between a dream and being awake. It’s a state just between those two. And if you can stay there, then you can channel something otherworldly, nonhuman,” says Butler of his hypnagogic cinematic practices.
Brian Butler’s “Babalon Working” on MOCAtv
After the short film was screened, there was a ritualistic performance art piece. Paz de la Huerta sat in a chair that was itself a work of art, facing the audience, making direct eye contact and sort of writhing and undulating around slowly, touching herself in a kind of sexy yet insane way that would be difficult to describe in any more detail than that. Extremely powerful strobe lights flashed around her.
Ashtar Command’s Chris Holmes did his Eno-thing on a laptop while Brian made stomach-churning low frequency oscillations on an analog synth. Then it was over.
Oddisee Films, in conjunction with David Lynch Foundation Television, have produced a portrait of Butler where he describes his meditational working methods. Eagle-eyed occultniks will note his interesting selection of book props: Znuz is Znees, Memoirs of a Magician by obscure Crowley acolyte C.F. Russell.
I appreciated that. For me, it’s all about the details.