Skip navigation

Singing Stone

Peter Callas

Singing Stone, 4:22 mins, Sydney, 1980

A hand clutches an oval stone which is drawn back and forth across a white surface in tight circular motions, grinding pigment. Muffled white noise and scraping sounds accompany the images. (Sound is an integral part of Callas’ practice, in which aural and visual elements o-en combine to create multi-layered sensory scapes that engulf the viewer.)

Produced with a black and white half inch reel-to-reel portapak video recorder (manufactured c1975), Singing Stone demonstrates Callas’ early experimentation with colouriser painting techniques. The effect is one of visual distortion in which pictorial surface and depth oscillate, creating a sense of dislocation and hallucination. 1

  • 1. Rachel Kent from “Peter Callas: Initialising History, video works 1980-1999”