Re: Cats and critics

From: Cari Machet (email suppressed)
Date: Wed Mar 25 2009 - 20:55:04 PDT

if you think there is no malaise you are wrong
in the film community AND the art community and
lots of other communities
you are missing or ignoring some information in my posts
i have actually seen freds actual body and have experienced his writing
many times
he is the authority i am referencing
he is specifically i would say THEE authority on brakhage

i am not particularly in love with critics
i align more with dada on such matters
once the art movement is 'known' it is over
plus there have been some way too powerful art critics
which i find stifling to art making

On Wed, Mar 25, 2009 at 8:01 PM, malgosia askanas <email suppressed> wrote:

> Cari wrote:
> what i am against is an authority on a subject not being
>> realistic/inclusive about the subject - that is what i was questioning
> [...]
> my issue isn't the films really
>> it is the critics possible bias
>> and the cultures lack of questioning
> What Fred said was:
> I have to say that, on my one viewing (on film), it was more than a little
>> disappointing. It is perhaps of some interest to know that she was
>> interested in things like flowing streams as a source of inspiration, but I
>> didn't need bland cinematography and a cute little kid as my tour guide to
>> appreciate nature.
> So: he said he only saw the film once and that, on that one viewing, he
> personally found it disappointing. More specifically, he found the
> cinematography bland, didn't get from the film any new insights into nature,
> and the device of having a cute kid as a tour guide didn't do anything for
> him to make the tour more interesting.
> Cari, I think I understand your point about the difficulty of avoiding
> "cuteness" when filming cats or kids, but what does this have to do with the
> price of eggs? Fred didn't even criticize the cuteness per se; he just
> indicated that Martin's use of the kid didn't improve (and maybe
> dis-improved) an otherwise bland film. Do you really think that the
> above-quoted opinion provides any justification for invoking issues of
> "authority" or demands of "realism" and "inclusivity"? What "authority"?
> Is what you mean by "authority" the fact that Fred has thought a lot about
> film, is not shy about his opionins, attempts to articulate his thoughts
> with precision and cogency, and has succeeded in publishing his writings in
> journals? But it seems to me that these are all GOOD for "our side",
> rather than occasions for attack and condescension - so I suspect it's
> something else you mean. OK, so then "realism" about what? The fact that
> it is difficult to make a good film? Does the fact that it is difficult to
> make a good film mean that one should shut up about films that one thinks
> don't work? And "inclusivity" about what? Every time we express a negative
> opinion we are supposed to "include" in this opinion all the other films we
> didn't like, so the poor film we are critiquing doesn't feel "excluded"?

again you are missing the fact that i have experienced fred
many many times for many years

> You say your issue is "the critic's possible bias". What kind of an issue
> is that? Every one of us is biased. Every time we express an opinion it's
> a possibly biased opinion. So what? It seems to me that the only relevant
> question is whether the opinion has some value. To the filmmaker: does it
> point out weaknesses the filmmaker was unaware of? Does it give him/her
> ideas for future work? Does it initiate a useful conversation? And so on.
> To other viewers: does it stimulate thought or perception? Does it put a
> new angle on the work? Does it serve as a bounce-off point to an opposite,
> or simply different, opinion? Does it initiate a useful conversation? And
> so on.

it's a good point
it aligns with the greatest happiness principle
john stuart mill
you can kill someone if it creates the greatest amount of happiness

there are biases and there are biases
grey area again

> A sensitive, thoughful, honest critic, an artists' critic - by which I mean
> a critic who plies his trade at the service of the artist and hir art - is,
> it seems to me, invaluable for artists. Artists need to know what their
> works "do" to the viewer, how they are perceived, whether, and in what
> sense, they "work". Artists make works for audiences, and they need to
> know what the audiences "get" from the work. That's what they learn from
> honest criticism: they learn what a sensitive, thoughtful viewer "got" from
> the work. Sometimes the critic misses the point and the criticism is
> useless - and sometimes it can be of tremendous value.

some artists do not make work for these purposes

> If on a list dedicated to experimental film we cannot freely express
> opinions about experimental films we have experienced - whether the opinion
> are positive or negative - without being attacked, disrespected, patronized,
> required to provide credentials, inducted into a group-therapy session,
> bored to death - then not only is this list in trouble, but filmmaking is in
> trouble. What kinds of filmmaking communities pressure their audiences to
> only express praise, and what kinds of audiences want to see films made by
> such communities? Oh, may heaven preserve us equally from the one and the
> other!

that you think this is not an issue is your choice

> Cari, and what is "the culture's lack of questioning"? What did the
> culture (which culture?) neglect to question by virtue of Fred expressing
> his rather modest opinion about Martin's "Gabriel"?

again history - expereince of freds posting ...
culture is underground film culture
the one we are in

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

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