Two-channel HD video with sound
Sound Design: Toby Wiltshire
Editor: Lara Garcia Reyne
My encounter with a fox came in the insomnolent early hours in an East London park. I wasn’t supposed to be there, and I felt the fox knew that. The following year I began to track foxes in my neighbourhood, from midnight until dawn. We never confronted each other, but I came to know their routes and if I stayed still for long enough they would continue patrolling their patches in my presence. They had little choice: occupying a densely populated city means no privilege of anonymity.
Night Circuits is an unfolding series of observations that reveals the relationship between different species sharing the same urban space. The visual footage, stretching across the two screens, reflects an interplay between the wild and the cultivated; vegetation part of the human-shaped environment. The sound track is a subtle collage of the city in the slow hours of the night, punctuated by the otherworldly cries of the fox.
In folklore, the fox is a trickster, with a capacity to shapeshift, able to spirit itself away with a flick of the tail. Yet here, foxes choose to remain in the city, and their ongoing presence in this challenging ecosystem attests to the animals’ cunning, resolutely surviving on the margins.