Bahar Noorizadeh – Ultima Ratio Δ Mountain of the Sun (2017)

Cinema devolved into the slow-motion industry: spectacles repeat. Ultima Ratio speeds up by slowing down the image-fix. Traversing the crime-enriched Bekaa valley, the camera uncovers the age-old industries of hashish, models for altering what we see. So too, the camera follows futures, a flash-forwarded optic that seeks to perceive what can be seen anew, cut, particled into vivid fields of matter. “In hashish there is no likeness,” only zero-sites for vision-production then, now as visual senses submitted to the rule of reason. The new reason, as this cinematic skin sees it, is not dead old technology, power and blood, not accelerated nothingness, hype and retro-fascism, but technology, each and every instance, as a talking with the dead–emotions, optics, hashish, radio transmitters, melo-dramas, fiber optic telecommunications, ideologies–and now, hashish as primitive technology, the Now as a science-fiction beyond the double binds, the bad infinities of u-/dys-topia. Instead, a tension-less state, a lack of anxiety over demarcating sapience from sentience, automation from human, intelligence farms from organic machines. They–these name voyagers of the ultimate reason–have no story, it has already happened, spirit became mainframe. Bodies metamorph into databanks. A cinema mixing 3-D objects and documentary footage views this state ahead of the state Δ the future returning as past–Mountain of the Sun.


Bahar Noorizadeh (b. 1988 Iran) lives and works in London, UK. Noorizadeh is an artist, writer and filmmaker. She works on the reformulation of hegemonic time narratives as they collapse in the face of speculation: philosophical, financial, legal, futural, etc. Noorizadeh is the founder of Weird Economies, an online art platform that traces economic imaginaries extraordinary to financial arrangements of our time. Her work has appeared at the German Pavilion, Venice Architecture Biennial 2021, Tate Modern Artists’ Cinema Program, Transmediale Festival, DIS Art platform, Berlinale Forum Expanded, and Geneva Biennale of Moving Images among others. Noorizadeh has contributed essays to e-flux Architecture, Journal of Visual Culture, and forthcoming anthologies from Duke University Press and Sternberg Press. She is pursuing her work as a PhD candidate in Art at Goldsmiths, University of London where she holds a SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship.