“Krater” (eng. “Crater”) is a light painting series by Kometa, the collaborative duo of filmmaker/photographer Aaron Palabyab and visual artist Agnieszka Rowińska.
The use of light painting nowadays is looked at as part of the vocabulary of the novice, impressive only to beginners. Indeed, examining much of the popular work that employs light painting, much of the work borders on kitsch even in its most technically accomplished form. However, this beginner’s sense of discovery is at the heart of our story about a cosmic visitor who arrives on Earth, learns to adapt, and eventually comes of age, discovered by a witness who rekindles a sense of wonder in a dark world.
Each of these traces of light is also a souvenir of a spontaneous performance that could only be witnessed by the camera, due to the darkness of the surroundings. As such, the series represents the intersection of our practices, Aaron's as a night landscape photographer and Agnieszka's as a painter working on installations that involve interaction with light.
The backdrop and inspiration for all the images is the mountain town of Sagada, deep in the Philippine Cordilleras. In some places in the region, where ancestral animism is still practiced, it is said that when someone dies, streaks of light can be seen to leap into the sky. These lights are called "bulalakaw" - the local word for meteor.