You will now find another video over at DavidGilmour.com (scroll down the page, it’s just before the tour dates), this time for ‘Faces of Stone’.
Directed by Aubrey ‘Po’ Powell, the video features black and white footage of David performing the song at his Hove studio, as well as scenes from Maya Deren’s 1944 avant-garde film, At Land.
At Land is a 15-minute silent film written and directed by the tragic Deren, who plays the woman whose pursuit of the man playing chess and the pawn that is washed away, we follow with such interest.
With its fractured narrative, it has a rather unsettling dream-like quality. We sense her disbelief and disappointment as she observes those around her, recognising herself, struggling to carry more than she can manage and dropping pebbles along the beach. We can easily imagine her frustration (or is it relief?) at being invisible: she is ignored as she slithers across a dining table, all seated around it oblivious to her presence as they happily chat and smoke. She is unable to reach the man sitting at the head of the table, his focus instead on a chess board, who gets up to leave just as she is within reach of him.
Maya Deren once said that the film is about the struggle to maintain one’s personal identity, which I think fits so well with the song’s lyrics and theme, which of course touches on the extremely cruel way that dementia robs a person of their memories and connection to all that is most familiar and comforting, and how others struggle with that emotional detachment. How time must seem to stand still when one’s speed of thought is so reduced and so much that is going on all around you seems to be a dream.
I’d love to know what you make of it, anyway.