"Narrative represents real or imaginary events in time. As with a landscape painting, a narrative film seems to offer an experience that stands in for — pretends to be — creates an illusion of — something taking place before us. In order for it to work, we must enter into the illusion, suppress our awareness of presence and treat illusion as a present reality." MALCOLM LA GRICE
Can we define time-structures for cinema and particularly expanded cinema that go beyond narrative? Or if not beyond it: around, underneath, across? The works in “Movable Facture: Time Frames” are drawn from an earlier moment in film’s history, when a preoccupation with structure was attended to through a variety of formal experiments and strategies that skirt or avoid narrative immersion. The selection is drawn from classic structural films such as Hollis Frampton’s Nostalgia, and little-seen local gems found in Pacific Cinémathèque’s film collection.
These experimental works are present as film, despite cinema’s potential to bring us toward something else. Eschewing story, they are more closely related through formal features that attempt to draw a viewer toward an unauthorized experience. While we might invest a psychological experience in a representation, we may also spend time with cinema’s problems. Flat fields of movement and sound can offer coherence, but it is not a coherence that belongs with the spectator.
The Flicker | Tony Conrad/USA 1966. 16mm, 30 mins.
Straight and Narrow | Beverly Conrad/USA 1970. 16mm, 10 mins.
Cinetude 2 | Keith Rodan/Canada 1969. 16mm, 5 mins.
Variations on a Cellophane Wrapper | David Rimmer/Canada 1970. 16mm, 8 mins.
T.O.U.C.H.I.N.G. | Paul Sharits/USA 1969. 16mm, 12 mins.
“Hapax Legomena I” (nostalgia) | Hollis Frampton USA 1971. 16mm, 39 mins.
Total running time: approx. 104 mins.
“Time Frames” accompanies the exhibition “Movable Facture,” featuring the work of Amy Granat and Drew Heitzler, Isabelle Pauwels, Benjamin Tiven, and Jennifer West, at VIVO Media Arts Centre, June 1-23, 2012. “Movable Facture” and “Time Frames” are supported by the BC Arts Council.