For this screening we bring together recent works by two artists who might be considered to occupy diametrically opposite positions in their careers and in the world, but whose work shares an formal materialist aesthetic ground, a personal and particular exploratory approach.
Malcolm Le Grice has enjoyed a long career as one of the UK's most influential and prolific experimental filmmakers. His influence as an artist, writer and academic has had a far-reaching and long-lasting effect in the world of artists' moving image. He continues to take an open and playful approach to his experimental work in digital video media. Diana Ford is a young artist from Perth, Australia, one of the most isolated cities on the planet. Her work derives its impetus from subjective influences and situations close to home, while her aesthetic sensibility is driven by curiosity about the potential for moving image manipulation.
Malcolm Le Grice
Digital Aberration (4 min, video, 2004); Portraits and Particulars: Critical Moments (for Jean Piaget) (1 min, video, 2004); Autumn Horizon Number 3 (6 min, video, 2005); Unforgettable (that's what you are) (5 min, video, 2002-2005); Lecture to an Academy (10 min, video, 2005); Anthony Dundee (2 min, video, 2006); Waiting for Ian (3 min, video, 2006); H2O-0C-24.02.06-12.01GMT - 03,50.40W - 50.16.30N (3 min, video, 2006); Denisined - Sinedenis (3 min, video, 2006); Finnegan Again (3 min, video, 2006); Of Keys and Beauty (2 min, video, 2006)
Desertus (1 min, 16mm/video); Doco (1 min, 16mm/video); Edit (2 min,16mm/video); WW5 (2 min, 16mm/video); Iris (1 min, 16mm/video); Face (1 min, 16mm/video); Mouse (3 min, 16mm/video); NT3D (1 min, video); Objective (4 min, 16mm/video); Planet Cancer (1 min, video); Routine (1 min, 16mm/video); Something Bush (4 min, video)
Malcolm Le Grice
Digital Aberration (4 min, video, 2004)
A punishment for digital theory that the artist must programme - every cheap visual effect in the editing package and a sound track made with free software from a corn-flakes packet - apologies to Oscar for all the hours he spent at the animation table
Portraits and Particulars
I have grouped the following works under a general title 'Portraits and Particulars'. This was not a project but came from the recognition of a new direction or emphasis emerging in the recent work. Though all the works try to work on various issues of cinematic experience and structure, I recognised the increasing element of portraiture - some attention to the person within and behind their image - their face? Partly some element of sentimental attachment - sometimes there but hidden in films like 'Little Dog For Roger'. This shift in emphasis also seems to be connected to the way a still photograph (falsely) gives permanence to fleeting moments - denies transience and death - but is ultimately vacuous? because it does not embody life through loss of the moment - symbolised in cinema? by the illusion of movement and coherent narrative? Progression.
Critical Moments (for Jean Piaget) (1 min, video, 2004)
A short work of a child just one year old playing with shells on a beach - close up of hands - inspired by the observation of his own children that is at the centre of Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget's work on the construction of reality in children.
Autumn Horizon Number 3 (6 min, video, 2005)
The horizon divides the sea and the sky. It appears as an end - the edge of the world. This is an illusion. There is something beyond the horizon as there is something beyond the limit of the frame and beyond the moment when the recording stops.
Unforgettable (that's what you are) (5 min, video, 2002-2005)
Four generations with shared genes in the matriarchal line - responding to the camera. This work began as an installation that has been reworked for single screen.
Lecture to an Academy (10 min, video, 2005)
A work about the giving of voice - its internal and external experience the predictive moment before a word and short term memory after it - immediate past and near future mixing with the present/presence. Peter Gidal lecturing - shot in Karlstad Sweden in August 2005.
Anthony Dundee (2 min, video, 2006)
Still images shot on a low resolution camera - Anthony McCall in Dundee and images of Line Describing a Cone.
Waiting for Ian (3 min, video, 2006)
The missing Ian Helliwell has problems with security at the airport.
H2O-0C-24.02.06-12.01GMT - 03,50.40W - 50.16.30N (3 min, video, 2006)
Still images of falling snow - made to move (random walk?) by change and multiple-superimposition (Mark Toby and calligraphy?)
Denisined - Sinedenis (3 min, video, 2006)
I sat with Dennis Oppenheim in Kassel and he gave me a working photograph of a drawing for his installation Mind-Twist-Wandering - I asked him to sign it for me - now in a little clip frame in my studio. I liked the pictures and made them into a repeating sequence 1-2-3-4-3-2-1-2
. and so on - a first level palindrome - then I copied the sequence at different levels of increasing speed until they animated - next I copied the whole sequence, reversed it to a second level palindrome. In a reference to Duchamps' ANEMIC CINEMA title I devised the palindromatic front and end title (losing an N as there were too many! Sorry Dennis). I wanted a sound track and liked a Bach sonata - I put this on and treated the speed in the same way as the picture (holding the pitch level) - also I treated this as a palindrome - reversing it for the second part of the video. When I showed this to Steven Devleminck and discussed the palindrome he told me that Bach had written a palindromatic work known as the 'Crab Cannon'. I then decided I would re-make the piece using this music which I located with the help of Al Rees and Nicky Hamlyn (who sent me a copy of the sheet music). I keyed the piece into my computer MIDI programme - and voiced it for strings - then treated it in the same way of speed changes and reverse repeats. The current version of the video has this constructed track. Another reference point is Forwards Backwards Minute Waltz by Ladislav Galeta. All this and it is only three minutes.
Finnegan Again (3 min, video, 2006)
A re-make of a short section of Jack Murray shaving from Finnegans Chin shot in 1980 - he sings the children's repeating song 'Michael Finnegan'
Of Keys and Beauty (2 min, video, 2006)
Waiting in the rain in a deserted alley-way by a drab courtyard - I decided to 'recover' the time by taking photographs with my Palm organizer - very low resolution - the previous day I had been discussing beauty, universals and particularity. No conclusions except perhaps an observation that the separation of visual effects from their context of discomfort and irritation makes them objects of pleasure??
Desertus (1 min, 16mm/video)
The question to ask yourself is are you alone or are you lonely? Everyone is at some point
lonely but it is the moment you know you are all alone in life that your views of life shift, blur
and are shaken. Fantasy dissolves in reality. Is it at this point in life when things stop seeming?
The suspended temporality of experiencing the event is living.
Doco (1 min, 16mm/video)
Everyone thinks they are an expert at something. The only thing you are an expert on is judging the Other. You can't even judge yourself if its not in relation to the Other. Just by looking. The film is a glimpse at the passers by and tourists around ground zero three months later caught in the act.
Face (1 min, 16mm/video)
Faces. How many are you wearing and do you change them on a regular basis? Do you remember when you put your first one on? It takes a bit of time to get used to each face. Some feel more comfortable than others and we keep them on for longer. Has your face become your fate?
Mouse (3 min, 16mm/video)
The future will ensure we get stuck in the virtual with no-way out. The mouse offers us the freedom to move in different dimensions even but is reserved to the screen. The shifting facets of the image brings science and art even closer together via their common denominator: Technology.
NT3D (1 min, video)
Achieving 3D using PAL/ NTSC format by altering the perception of the Depth of Field of the Image.
Objective (4 min, 16mm/video)
It is hard to hold onto someone especially when they are not there. How long can you hold onto your memories for?
Planet Cancer (1 min, video)
Waiting in line. Waiting to buy food. Waiting to pay a bill. Waiting to get money out. Waiting to grow up. Waiting to get sick. Waiting Waiting Waiting. Fear. Anxiety. More Waiting. This film is about feeling helpless when the Other invades your personal space.
Routine (1 min, 16mm/video)
Even crossing borders is a chore with globalisation taking its toll. What better example of a human robot than the flight attendant.
Something Bush (4 min, video)
Aquanis Crowe, an 18 year old in a wheel chair, living in remote community of Fitzroy Crossing in Western Australia, describes his first experience with the camera in Kreel or pigeon English.