So the creatures in Jenkin van Zyl’s latest film ‘Machines of Love’ are ugly, but who are we to judge? Let them be in love in their gross, disturbing way. Do you not remember when we were called deviants and experimented on?
Their aborted attempts to procreate, the way they smile at each other… like 1930s Berlin before the Nazis. Or at least the way Cabaret portrayed it – all business attire and suspenders. It is still beautiful to watch them dance, the gracefulness in their movements. See how she raises her arms up in front of the lake, wearing utterly impractical high heels in the post-apocalyptic snow. Defiant.
I find myself rooting for them. As the half-suited man climbs the snowy mountain, I am willing him to succeed. You make angels in the snow if you want to, love.
Words: Luke Cockayne
‘Machines of Love’, an installation with a film element, took place at Tramway as part of Glasgow International Festival 2021 from 11-27 June.