The follow-up to 2007’s All That Rises, Trees of Syntax, Leaves of Axis is Canada-based Japanese filmmaker Daichi Saito‘s beautiful second collaboration with composer Malcolm Goldstein. Hues of the Spectrum, Goldstein’s ecstatic, semi-improvised violin piece, is played over images of trees captured by Saito in Super 8 and 16mm–and subsequently hand-processed–at a park in Montreal. The result is an overwhelming sensory experience.

From Mubarak Ali’s Mubi write-up, Everything That Rises Must Converge: Some Notes on ‘Trees of Syntax, Leaves of Axis’, published in 2010:

Images, projected at a speed that would define them as “fleeting” (or, when they rest in stasis, seeming to vibrate), frame-by-frame (as they were edited), as if ‘an image beckons another image,’ driven to their respective deaths that is represented by the appearance of the black screen which threatens every cut. The filmmaker has ventured into the forest which happens to be a park in Montréal, Canada, and he simply films, on Super-8 and 16mm film (material originally used for an earlier film), the maple trees he encounters–images which must then represent this encounter with nature through the use of another encounter, in the darkroom: the film undergoing hand-processing, where certain elements remain beyond the control of the filmmaker, subsequently rephotographed with an optical printer, and edited frame-by-frame (as they move). After all, viewing a film is also bearing witness to its material creation.