Re: The Politics of the Bootleg

From: Jorge Amaro (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Jun 11 2008 - 13:54:37 PDT

Here is something funny to watch regarding thhis entire conversation:


2008/6/11 Nicky Hamlyn <email suppressed>:
> I second this. I've not seen "The Flicker" either and I'm not going to see
> it on Friday at Tate Modern because of a clash!
> The critic David Sylvester once said that his interest in art was fired by
> looking at black and white reproductions in books, and that it was some time
> before he saw the paintings in the flesh. There's an argument to be made
> that poor black and white reproductions spur one on to see the real thing
> more than seeing high quality colour reproductions, which can seem to
> replace the real pictures, or quell the desire to see them.
> Sylvester extended his point by complaining that art was too easy to see
> these days, and that (as a consequence?) Tate Modern was full of
> rubber-neckers,
> Nicky Hamlyn.
> On 11 Jun 2008, at 18:24, Chris Kennedy wrote:
>> It also leads to the question (as does James' post below), why must we
>> have
>> access to everything? To me, part of the appeal of watching film (probably
>> a
>> hangover from comic and record collecting) is the slow amassing of
>> experience. There is always something to look forward to. Watching Out 1:
>> Noli m Tangere (a holy grail film for me) last summer was a experience not
>> of just the film, but of a communion with my 20-year old self who was
>> reading James Monaco's The New Wave. Much like a youthful reading about
>> the
>> Velvet Underground in my small town library's Rolling Stone, much of my
>> interest in film was sparked by some fleeting descriptions in magazines or
>> books, and it has taken me quite a few years to get to see even a portion
>> of
>> what I wanted to see. And yes, I made job decisions (programming) and
>> geographic decisions (Toronto/SF) in order to facilitate that. But other
>> decisions, like not knowing another language or not living on another
>> continent, will make it harder for me to see many other things... So be
>> it.
>> In contrast, I've downloaded tons of rare albums from blogs, and I'm not
>> sure I'm that much richer for it. I have a friend who has thousands of
>> burned DVDs--amassed, not watched--and he tells me he's tired of movies.
>> Is
>> it because it has moved from a desire to a storage obligation?
>> We now seem to have a class of people who demand to have it all, only
>> because theoretically you can. And when people, like the artists that
>> created them, try to limit that, they get shamed. Really bizarre.
>> I haven't seen "the Flicker", yet, although I want to. I do think,
>> however,
>> that the representations of it I have "seen", ie. some written words in a
>> book and images in my imagination those words sparked, will suffice until
>> I
>> see the real thing. And if I never do, there's still something valuable to
>> desire.
>> Chris
>>> ------------------------------
>>> Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2008 11:12:20 -0400
>>> From: James Cole <email suppressed>
>>> Subject: Re: The Politics of the Bootleg
>>> The difference between found footage and what ubu is doing is pretty
>>> clear, I think. One is recontextualizing work and re-presenting it in
>>> creative ways. Ubu, on the other hand, shows the work in degraded
>>> form without any regard for the maker. They're not trying to create
>>> art (which is something that can, I think, fall under the umbrella of
>>> fair use). They're just showing other people's art, with total
>>> disregard for the people who made it and with how they present it. It
>>> seems to me that there is a pretty clear divide from found footage and
>>> what ubu does. I'm not sure what I can say, really, if we can't
>>> distinguish between what Bruce Conner, Ken Jacobs, etc., etc. do, and
>>> what Ubu is doing (with its self righteous hall of shame), then I
>>> don't really know what to say. But, to me, it doesn't seem especially
>>> tricky to distinguish between Bruce Conner and Ubu, or between
>>> Negativeland and The Pirate Bay. If you use a little bit of common
>>> sense, you should be able to establish what is fair use.
>>> Furthermore, this idea that "what matters is that people see the
>>> work," thats very nice, FOR YOU. But if Ken Jacobs and Robert Beavers
>>> and Nathanial Dorsky want their films to be seen in certain controlled
>>> enviornments, then that is THIER right. If they did want to lock it
>>> in a drawer, that would be their right, as well. I get the feeling
>>> that some people would much rather their work never be seen than it be
>>> seen in poor light.
>>> Also, is it really so wrong for people to want to get paid for their
>>> work? People throw so much money into making this stuff, and we don't
>>> think they should be able to negotiate the terms for the showing of
>>> their work? They should spend all of their money to make a film and
>>> then get a job delivering pizzas to pay for it? There's a letter out
>>> there somewhere from Frampton to the Moma regarding some of these
>>> issues. There is an idea that artists should be greatful that anyone
>>> wants to see their work, but to me that should be up to the artist.
>>> -James
>>> On 6/11/08, Jorge Amaro <email suppressed> wrote:
>>>> Could Bruce Conner made A Movie having that in mind? Could dozens of
>>>> found footage film makers have done anything at all? The concept of
>>>> property is somehow confusing for me. The idea of nullify the found
>>>> footage films I love so much over a concept of property is weird. And
>>>> no one will think that a videotaped event from some museum or
>>>> screening will substitute the film, and i think what matters is that
>>>> people see the work, isnt it for that reason people make them in the
>>>> first place? If they made it over an idea of property they could close
>>>> it in drawer and throw away key, that alone is the only option if you
>>>> dont want to see copies of your work.
>>>> j.
>>>> 2008/6/11 James Cole <email suppressed>:
>>>>>> That's like saying a
>>>>>> postcard of the Mona Lisa is the intellectual property of Leonardo.
>>>>> Is that really such an absurd idea? I mean, it seems pretty clear
>>>>> that, were Leonardo alive, it would be his property. Certainly you
>>>>> can't be in favor of the postcard manufacturer being able to make
>>>>> profits off of the Mona Lisa while Da Vinci has no say whatsoever.
>>>>> If it wasn't ubuweb that was using it (an organization which is
>>>>> ostensibly in favor of avant-garde film), would people really be so
>>>>> allowing? If ubu can show a clip recorded off of a monitor, then can
>>>>> the US Army use the same clip in recruiting videos? Can McDonalds use
>>>>> it to sell burgers?
>>>>> __________________________________________________________________
>>>>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
>>>> __________________________________________________________________
>>>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
>>> __________________________________________________________________
>>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
>>> ------------------------------
>>> End of FRAMEWORKS Digest - 11 Jun 2008 - Special issue (#2008-281)
>>> ******************************************************************
>> __________________________________________________________________
>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.
> __________________________________________________________________
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.

For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.