Archive for the 'expanded cinema' Category

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Lucas Ihlein: Mediating Experience in Expanded Cinema Re-enactment

The following is a contribution to ISEA 2013 – presented as part of this panel session.

The panel, organised by Brogan Bunt, was set up to address the broad notion of mediation – and to respond to his assertion that “artists themselves, in their practices, have begun to move fluidly between paradigms.”

“How,” Brogan asks, “does the experience of digital processes inflect work produced in the broader social field? How are issues of concept, process, event, participation and interaction remediated through intimate experience of digital media?”

I’ve attempted to answer these questions, in my rather folksy way, by thinking about the work that Louise Curham and I do as Teaching and Learning Cinema.

If you like, the text may be accompanied by a slideshow of images from our work in re-enacting expanded cinema:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bilateral/sets/72157634073279851/show

Continue reading ‘Lucas Ihlein: Mediating Experience in Expanded Cinema Re-enactment’

After meeting Malcolm – top of mind

Notes in response to specific questions have been started by Lucas and we will continue them but it seems important to capture what’s stayed at the top of the mind after visiting Malcolm:
– we covered a lot of ground!
– Malcolm says that when he made these performance film works (eg Horror Film, Gross Fog, Matrix, 4 Wall Duration), his orientation was cinema rather than live art as we now think of it (eg performance art, happenings), the dialogue/position was with/against screen and film culture. This is true for his film works of this era too.
– in a conversation about the context for making his work around the time of Horror Film, Malcolm made the point that at the time and in the whole era, experimentation in media other than film drew upon long lineages. He used the example of music where things have seemed strange and new to makers and audiences many times before. As a young form, cinema didn’t have this lineage and so things really could be new in this form, energising and exhilarating in its newness, difficult in the lack of context and language for audiences.
– Malcolm advises that the first performance of Horror Film 1 (1971) was at Arts Lab – an interesting question because we found nothing about it in the files we have consulted to date at BAFVSC about Malcolm, Filmaktion and London Filmmakers Coop 1966-74.
– White Field Duration is effectively a scratch film where transparent leader is slowly marked with vertical scratches until it is evident they are intentional. Then horizontal scratches emerge. In the end the two fields of scratches seem to be rain over a body of water. The image is then reprinted in neg/pos. The sound is created by the image which runs into the optical sound track space. We understand from Lux that as Malcolm told us, there is just one print of this and no neg.

MLG Questions 01: Breath

When we started thinking about re-enacting Malcolm Le Grice’s Horror Film 1 a year ago, several questions popped up straight away.

These were mainly technical issues about the source material for the three colour projections, and how the audio is produced while the piece is being performed. Some of these questions were answered by Malcolm here – but it’s only now that we’ve spent several days hanging out with him that we begin to understand these answers.

Bit by bit, I’m going to flesh out some of the answers based on notes that Louise and I made while we were in Devon…

THE BREATHING SOUNDTRACK:

Our instinct was that the amplified breathing which provides the sonic undertone of the work would be produced live – a live feed from a lapel microphone, for example. This would seem to fit with the live-ness of the projected shadows produced by the body in front of the three projectors, and could operate as a kind of index of the performer’s own physiological state (calmness, exhaustion etc) during the performance.
Continue reading ‘MLG Questions 01: Breath’

TLC Public Events, June 2013

Louise and Lucas are busy this month.

Here’s what’s happening:

Wednesday June 12, 4-5pm
ISEA, New Law School Lecture Theatre 106, University of Sydney

Lucas is presenting (via Skype from London), speaking briefly about our work re-enacting Expanded Cinema from the point of view of medium and materiality. You can read the abstracts and the panel synopsis here.

Friday June 14, 2:30pm-4pm
Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL

Lucas and Louise will be performing (Wo)man with Mirror and engaging in discussion afterwards, at a conference in London. The conference is called “Museum Futures in an Age of Austerity” and the details are here.
Here’s the draft conference schedule.

Tuesday June 18, 7pm onwards
Apiary Studios, 458 Hackney Rd.

Louise and Lucas are performing (Wo)man with Mirror and engaging in discussion afterwards, together with Dr Patti Gaal-Holmes & Dr Kim Knowles. Guy Sherwin “himself” will be there, along with his partner and collaborator Lynn Loo.
All the details are here.
This event was kindly organised by Sally Golding and is an Unconscious Archives Salon.
This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, with support from ACME studios in London. Here is a flyer from ACME studios as a PDF.
ozco logo

Wednesday June 19th, 7.30pm onwards
Cafe Oto
18-22 Ashwin street, Dalston, London, E8 3DL
Tickets : £8 adv / £10 on the door

Louise Curham will be showing her handmade super8 films in collaboration with musician Alison Blunt. The evening also features the work of Karel Doing and Pierre Bastien. This event is number 8 in the Unconscious Archives series organised by Sally Golding and James Holcolmbe. All the details are here.

What are we doing in England?

louise, lucas, malcolm, devon

Here we are with Malcolm Le Grice in his studio in Devon.

Louise Curham and I have come to Devon, complete with a big and patient entourage (our families!).

We’re here to visit Malcolm and begin the process of working towards a re-enactment (or an intergenerational handover of sorts) of his Horror Film 1 from the early 1970s. (Here’s a blog post from a year ago where Louise and I ask some questions about this piece and what re-enacting it might involve. And in this page, you can see what we mean by “re-enacting expanded cinema”…)

Malcolm still performs this key work of expanded cinema – in fact there’s been a resurgence of interest and lots of requests for him to do it, ever since the turn of the century.

But in 2010 when Malcolm came to do a screening of his work in Sydney, we started a conversation about his feeling that it might be time to think about turning it over to someone a bit younger. In fact, as early as 2001, he was talking about the need to find an “understudy”:

malcolm le grice article
[source: Malcolm Le Grice, Improvising Time and Image, essay in Filmwaves 14, 2001, p. 14-18]

This project has flowed from the work we did re-enacting Guy Sherwin’s “Man with Mirror”. Our re-enactment of Guys’ piece was first performed in 2009, and we’ll present it in London for the first time very soon – details here.

The Horror Film project, of course, has a range of different challenges and we can’t pre-empt how we’ll resolve them before we jump in and start playing with the work using our own bodies.

However, even before we start, we’ve been really enjoying talking through a whole range of practical and philosophical issues with Malcolm in his studio in Devon – and we also spent some fun days with Steven Ball and David Curtis, in the archives at the British Artists Film and Video Study Collection at Central St Martins College in London.

Here’s Louise in her element rummaging through the compactus with David Curtis, who is the lynchpin of this very important archive:

louise curham and david curtis

This project has been assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body, with support from ACME studios in London.
australia council logo

Artists’ Salon: Moving Image 1 at Critical Path, Sydney

louise and lucas with woman with mirror users manual

Part of Critical Path’s Artists’ Salon series, Moving Image 1 looks at experiments with movement within interdisciplinary practice and is curated by Narelle Benjamin and Sue Healey.

It will feature a discussion with and studio presentations of work by artists Sam James (From the Rainforest Mind to the Desert Mind) and Louise Curham and Lucas Ihlein ((Wo)man with Mirror).

Saturday 11 May, studio open from 3pm onwards with 4pm event start.

Free event, but please RSVP here.

More details:

CRITICAL PATH PRESENTS
ARTISTS’ SALON: MOVING IMAGE 1
installation works by Sam James, Louise Curham and Lucas Ihlein
SATURDAY 11 MAY 2013
4.00 – 6.00 pm
at THE DRILL
1c New Beach Road
Darling Point (Rushcutters Bay)
The Drill Hall will be open from 3.00 pm for viewing of Sam James’ installation.
Free public event
Continue reading ‘Artists’ Salon: Moving Image 1 at Critical Path, Sydney’

From the archives – Sydney Moving Image Coalition screenings 2003-4

Screening #1 Lanfranchi’s, 18 Mar 2003

Screening #2 Lanfranchi’s May 2003

Screening #3 Lanfranchi’s Jul 2003, #4 Kudos Gallery, COFA late 2003 (page 1, page 2)

About Primary Sources and the 2004 screenings (page 1, page 2) – a manifesto!

Screening #5 Lanfranchi’s 3 Feb 2004 inc. Takehisa Kosugi’s A Film & Film #4. (Side 1, side 2 of A4, triple folded)

The screenings continued for some time. We’ll put up more archives soon. It’s important to point out that Tony Woods, Al Young, Dan Edwards and (Lanfranchi’s) Brendan were critical in establishing SMIC.

TLC’s Anthony McCall project in Perform Repeat Record

perform repeat record

A chapter I wrote about our 2007 re-enactment of Anthony McCall’s Long Film for Ambient Light has been included in the book Perform Repeat Record: Live Art in History, edited by Amelia Jones and Adrian Heathfield.

You can check out the book here.

Louise Curham and I were really pleased to be involved in this publishing project, which places the work that we are doing with “researching Expanded Cinema via live action” alongside many other attempts by artists and curators to revisit performative works of the recent past.

A review, written by Caroline Wake, was published in Realtime.

You can read the chapter as a pdf file here.

-Lucas Ihlein

workshop 27 April 2009 – Louise’s notes

TLC workshop Monday 27 April 2009 – Working towards a re-creation of Guy Sherwin’s Man with Mirror.

Chronology

10.35 am Lucas collects Louise from Central.
10.45 am arrive Petersham.

Discussed contribution of new iteration given Guy is still performing this work – discussed the value of ‘slips’ in our iteration, and the significance of transmission of the work to a new generation, both contributions we hope we are making.

There was lengthy discussion about integrity in re-enactment, informing audiences where work knowingly departs from the form and/or intention of the original. Also a long discussion about William Raban’s Diagonal, recently shown in Canberra by our Brisbane colleagues who brought Guy out last year, Otherfilm. Noteworthy that this film was made as a single film that runs concurrently through 3 projectors, ie one film, laced to run through 3 projectors one after the other.

Reviewed Lynn’s YouTube documentation of a London performance of Guy’s along with our ‘gash’ telecine (ie very rough video tape of projected film) of Guy’s 1976 super 8 that we made in Brisbane last Aug. We checked out the timings of the three cycles and the position of the roll changes. We double checked our understanding of how the actions unfold. We studied the actions that occur around the roll changes.

12.30 pm
We loaded the camera, measured focus, set tripod, set sun/shade/dapple position on the mirror, set the framing. We selected to wear singlets as the tension in Guy’s body in performing with the mirror is noteworthy. For me, I pondered the implications of the pregnant body by June when this work is shown.

1pm ate minestrone with rocket salad from Petersham garden

Framed up Lucas so we might detect a neighbour in the background. Discussion of where Louise would be visible when the mirror side faced out.

Discussion of the role of the second person turning the camera on and off – not sure if Guy had a helper, we think we detect a second person in the 1976 footage.

We checked the duration of an S8 reel at 18FPS. We enlisted a timer to help with the choreography – a word I really understand now as the placement of action in time.

We filmed Lucas, a most exciting development. Questions about whether the sun moved too far during the 9 mins as by the end the dapple was quite subtle and his face may be darker than we’d like. The dapple of the clothes line and the mulberry leaves was very beautiful and such a sharp autumnal Sydney day.

c. 2 pm
After filming Lucas, we went up to the glazier to get my mirror cut down. We had a long chat with the glazier, who explained the difference between a glazier and a glass cutter, separate trades in the UK but rolled up here in Australia.

We then filmed me. By the third roll I found the mirror very heavy – felt like I had no real control over it, mostly desperation at the weight and lack of inspiration as to what to discover with it given the battle to hold it.

4 pm
We concluded with discussions about staging the work.
– immovable requirement seems to be clear floor space
– discussed possibility of four performance pairs – Louise, mother of Louise, Lucas, father of Lucas
– requirement to carry through commitment to construction of this performance as the work we are exhibiting.

5.18 train Petersham to Central

16 Feb correspondence

drawing 16 Feb 2009 illustration of 'framed' mirror