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press: Inside an Elusive Chronicle of Tilda Swinton’s New Film, Memoria

But the boundaries between cinema, art, philosophy and reality have always been blurred for Weerasethakul – and the captivating table book that accompanies Memoria (published by Fireflies Press this week in the UK) too, feels like something of a waking fantasy. “As I travelled, I have had many imaginary films in my head,” Weerasethakul tells AnOther via email, cryptically. “They are in this book”...

He is describing his experience of the strange condition known as Exploding Head Syndrome – a rare kind of parasomnia that can deprive the sufferer of sleep. “For years I usually woke up after three hours of sleep, fresh,” Weerasethakul continues. “Then I entered a ‘drifting’ stage in which scenarios came and went … The images were dim, as if they were in a stage of decay. Logic was not clearly understood. Time decelerated.”

This waking dream-state mimics the nature and form of the Memoria book. A structureless montage of script notes, diary entries, hand-drawn illustrations and rich research photography that traverses archaeological sites in Bogotá and the verdant jungles of the South American countryside, it feels itself like a fractured stream of consciousness. Weerasethakul explains the book as “like a film in itself, with its [own] wealth of memory.”