From: Roddy, Bernard P. (email suppressed)
Date: Tue Mar 03 2009 - 16:01:48 PST
Terranova's book Network Culture undertakes to replace the discourse of representation with that of information (I approximate), and to get beyond the terms of cultural criticism (traced from Marx through the Frankfurt School to British emphasis on identity). Walley's reliance on the language of distribution ("from point A to point B," "institutions through which these things are brought to us") seems ill-suited for examining the nature of the practice Anders has going, particularly given that we can constructively examine the project without seeing the work (right?). Hmm.
From: Experimental Film Discussion List [email suppressed]
Sent: Tuesday, March 03, 2009 12:25 PM
To: email suppressed
Subject: Re: Ephermal filmworks? History?
Tony's post on ephemerality, performance, paracinema, and phone calls
(!), is very thought-provoking. We have had great man histories, and
"great film" histories, now a "great phone call" history?
As someone who has written on paracinema, Anders's original email
piqued my curiosity. I would say, though, that ephemerality itself
isn't a necessarily or sufficient condition for a work to be
paracinematic, at least as I've used that term (having adapted it from
Ken Jacobs, who I originally thought was the first to coin it, though
recent research has begun to make me reconsider this). Like Tony, I
wouldn't want to see works "swept together" under that category. I
worry that the category could beome bloated and thus less meaningful.
In any case, ephemerality may be a condition of certain examples of
paracinema, but, again, not the defining one. I consider another of
Tony's works, Yellow Movies, to be paracinematic, but as works on
paper they are concrete, lasting, tangible, tactile (though admittedly
they change over time). What makes them paracinematic, as I see it, is
that they trade in the values, effects, and qualities of cinema
without being embodied in the medium of film. This could include the
category of "imaginary movies," a category I keep running into the
further I explore "expanded cinema." Indeed, I've heard Tony and
others speak of Yellow Movies in this way - our contact with them is
so temporary compared to their duration - years and years - that they
really only exist in our imagination. A different mode of film/
spectator relationship is suggested.
I suppose this might have something to do with Anders's project - once
the works are deleted, if they only exist in the memory (I mean the
memory of an individual, or social group - not a computer, which is a
different matter), then perhaps we have an example of a work designed
to be only "imaginary." But from what I understand from reading the
email, there is an original work, embodied in a conventional cinematic
medium - film or video - that can continue to exist in duplicate on
computer hard-drives even after the original is destroyed.
I'm intrigued by the different historical and institutional
circumstances surrounding the ephemerality of Anders's works and 7360
Sukiyaki and other projection performances and works of paracinema.
The former are purposefully destroyed, and their continued existence
is left to fate, as it were - to the exigencies the distribution of
material via the internet. Projection performances like Tony's, by
dint of being a live action involving unpredictable materials, are
inherently not repeatable (in the same way the projection of a film
print by a mechanical projector is repeatable) or preservable (except
via a secondary medium - film or video recording), and therefore
The concern over the relationship between an original and copies
echoes art world concerns - here transposed to the age of the
internet, as Tony suggests by referencing "net art" - more than
traditional film distribution concerns, which strike me as more the
province of the body of work usually referred to as paracinema.
Projection performances old and new - Tony's work (I'm also thinking
of Bowed Film), along with that of Ken Jacobs, Malcolm LeGrice, Guy
Sherwin, Luis Recoder and Sandra Gibson, Bruce McClure, Bradley Eros
and Jeanne Liotta, and so on, use the characteristics of performance -
including its ephemerality - to throw light on features of cinema that
are not normally visible in the traditional film projection/viewing
situation. Of course, they also pose(d) challenges to the customary
channels of distribution and methods of exhibition, which also define
"normal cinema" for us as much as the materials of the film medium.
Maybe this is a point of overlap between these works and the project
Anders outlines: both draw attention to how artworks make it from
point A to point B, and whether they do, and the consequences. For me,
this is part of the "cinema" in "paracinema:" not just the aesthetics
of the moving image, whatever materials they're embodied in, but the
whole range of practices and institutions through which these things
are brought to us, made possible, made visible (or not).
By the way, Tony has a very interesting piece that touches on many of
these things in a recent issue of Millennium Film Journal (issue
43/44, on paracinema, of course).
For what it's worth,
Department of Cinema
On Mar 2, 2009, at 11:56 AM, Tony Conrad wrote:
> This inquiry raises interesting questions concerning the
> categorization of media
> works that might previously have been swept together under the term
> But rather than functioning as cinema (or as performance), Anders'
> work inhabits
> a network, and belongs in the historical tradition of telephone
> calls. As I have
> been in the habit of claiming, regarding the relation between
> telephone calls and
> cultural capital, there has arguably heretofore been only one
> "great" phone call
> -- Bell's first one. The other trillions are stuck on a sliding
> scale of
> irrelevance. Perhaps the networking of cellphone images will inflect
> condition. The Rodney King episode suggests that this may happen
> chiefly when
> phones become video cameras first and telephones only secondarily.
> In cinema history there are certainly thousands of films that have
> been destroyed
> at various stages, primarily because they could not achieve
> distribution. But
> Anders wishes his work to be regarded neither as phone calls nor as
> films, but in connection with the alternative media tradition. This
> includes a
> lot of curious and diverse "ephemeral" works -- my own "7360
> Sukiyaki", made in
> the theater and immediately thrown at the screen, among them. These
> films have
> been largely associated with performance, and that is not a factor
> in Anders'
> pieces -- which I would tend therefore to regard as "net art".
> There is more writing to be done on these topics, but Anders does
> not suggest
> that his research and historical interest will reach beyond his
> efforts in art
> On Mon 03/02/09 9:10 AM , Anders/Recycled email suppressed
>> Hi all,
>> Iâ��m doing some research about film works that only exists for
>> shortwhile, films screened once and then destroyed, films made and
>> screened, and so on.
>> Iâ��m doing some work in this area and are interested
>> historically.Would be interested in all your knowledge concerning
>> this subject. Any
>> info or pointers much appreciated.
>> Since 2006 I have released films on the file sharing networks only in
>> a project I called P2P ART - The aesthetics of ephemerality.
>> Art made for - and only available on - the peer to peer networks.
>> The original artwork is first shared by the artist until one other
>> user has downloaded it.
>> After that the artwork will be available for as long as other users
>> The original file and all the material used to create it are deleted
>> by the artist.
>> â��Thereâ��s no originalâ��
>> Feel free to donâ��t or download the films, watch it and share
>> it for
>> aslong as you like. Or delete it immediately. The aesthetics of
>> Released films:
>> Duration: 8hours8minutes8seconds
>> released and deleted 2008/08/08.
>> Duration: 60minutes
>> released and deleted 2008/03/16.
>> Duration: 45minutes
>> released and deleted 2007/09/15.
>> Duration: 73minutes
>> released and deleted 2006/09/15.
>> Currently working on the fifth film titled 090909. A 9hour,
>> 9minute, 9
>> seconds long film that will be released and deleted on September 09,
>> 2009. Filmed entirely using a mobile phone.
>> Project url: www.p2p-art.com
>> Anders Weberg - Artist and Filmmaker
>> Recycled Image Studio
>> DÃ¶belnsgatan 3A
>> S-212 13 MalmÃ¶ - Sweden
>> Studio adress:
>> SÃ¶dra BulltoftavÃ¤gen 51
>> S-212 22 MalmÃ¶ - Sweden
>> + 46 736 57 58 69
>> (address suppressed)
>> Before printing this, please think about the environment.
>> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at om>.
> 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>.