Re: video haiku (was 365 v....) plus a plea for video threads

From: Kevin Obsatz (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Jan 24 2007 - 10:39:34 PST

I'm certainly no expert on film history -

my point I guess was just that it seems like people need to sit with
a new format or a new medium for awhile before figuring out how to
use it in a personally expressive way.

So any dismissal of video as clunky or industrial or TV-oriented,
based on how it was used from 1980-2000, is perhaps premature.

Even if 16mm came about in the 20s, that still means there were 20-
some years of film developing as a business and then an industry
first, primarily in 35mm, right?


On Jan 24, 2007, at 12:04 PM, 40 Frames wrote:

>> I imagine it's a very similar evolution to what happened with film,
>> when the smaller formats evolved (16mm and super-8) - first it was
>> used by professionals (tv, news crews), then in a utilitarian but
>> independent way (documentaries, home movies) and finally as a tool
>> for creating very personal, intimate art.
> This is not the most accurate description of the development of small
> formats. First, they (16mm in 1923, 8mm in 1932, and there were of
> course
> other small formats in other parts of the world...9.5, 17.5, 28mm)
> were
> marketed to "amateur" filmmakers for home movie purposes.
> Well-to-do and famous people used 16mm to document home life and
> travel,
> eg Man Ray's Kodachrome home movies of the 1930s. A whole gneration of
> experiemental filmmakers in the 1930s and 1940s were experimenting
> with
> the format. Bateson/Mead, as I understand it, were a rare exception in
> their use of 16mm for ethnographic purposes.
> "Professional" applications of 16mm didn't come about until the
> post world
> television market started developing. The Arri St was not
> introduced until
> 1952. For the first 30 years of the 16mm format it was widely the
> domain
> of "amateur" makers. 8mm was never used "professionally", and super 8
> which was a late comer in 1965 (around the same time that Rune Ericson
> began developing super 16) was marketed to the "amateur" as 16mm was
> initially.
> To say that small film formats were first used by "professionals"
> ignores
> the history of these formats. Many people used small format film for
> personal and artistic expression before the 1960s, and many people
> other
> than Maya Deren.
> -Alain
> ================
> Alain LeTourneau
> Pamela Minty
> 425 SE 3rd, #400
> Portland, OR 97214
> United States
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> Skype ID: frames40
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For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.