re-enacting guy’s man with mirror (1976)

Thoughts in haste from today:

1. An important aspect of Guy’s method and point of connection for Curham seems to be open curiosity; discovering through doing; at outset don’t know outcome; finding/discovering work/image with camera in hand.

Railings for example seems a study of what will happen if? The if is printing the image which has a consistent and patterned vertical into the sound and solves the need to make a visual alteration, a visual ‘what if’ by turning the projector on its side.

Man with mirror seems a ‘what if’ on several counts – way for an ‘experimental film maker’ to bring own body into performance, to perform; curiosity about translation of film screen (something about it being both subject and object ie it’s the topic of the film in one sense but it’s also the material centre, the device); curiosity about space, expansion of space by the way the mirror behaves and by the index of the screen in the location of the original film. It is the tool that callibrates the original space with the space where the performance takes place, that allows the original to be ‘mapped’ onto the performance site.

2. The time shifting element is interesting – connection to Anneke’s comment about altering the usual chronology of event and documentation – I think this is what she’s trying to get at somehow, how you can expand and contract time by making something in one place and then re-making it another, almost too simple a thought but it does have some kind of potential concertina (ph. sp.) aspect (ie ability to expand and condense) which is what we’re doing with the re-enactment.

3. Other thoughts in no particular order:

a. curiosity Guy employs creates a quite ego-less performance mode. curiosity in this sense is quite synonymous with don’t know the outcome.

discovery in the process of making is my personal link to this work and the way-in i’m comfortable with

b. discussion about guy’s other work and his work with Lyn, discussion about vowels and consonents as a different kind of work in that it is composed rather than found – in the sense that some of the other works explore a purely material property and so you could call them found.

c. discussion about nature of ‘cinema’ in this work – that it allows these essential quite simple propositions to be very rich sites

d. discussion about how formal film artworks ie material film ie Sherwin’s material films are very open texts, can have multiple readings because the implied focus of the maker is quite restricted which means the audience has very free reign which becomes more and more free as time passes and the texts resonant in more and more unexpected ways. For me this is the essence of archival material, the way it can be read and interpreted can carry so much more alongside the original intention and purpose.


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