Re: [Frameworks] Quo Vadis Celluloid?

From: Anna Biller <>
Date: Tue, 23 Aug 2011 12:28:50 -0700

On Aug 23, 2011, at 10:17 AM, Fred Camper wrote:

> Well, I'd like to think that the way we use existing forms of media,
> the way one can build up complex and new perceptual and emotional and
> intellectual fields of experience for the viewer out of existing
> materials and technologies, might be able to "change the world" by
> first changing individual perceptions.

The main way in which individual perceptions change is, people become accustomed to the new media and come to prefer it to the old media. That's already happened to a large extent or maybe almost totally with film and video. Most young people I think don't care for the film properties we've been discussing - the accidents, the grain, the softness, the light. They think it's just sloppy and messy and not clean and bright enough. The same thing happens with images - people who are raised staring at computer screens come to prefer digitally created images to handmade images.

I was teaching a college drawing class once where I showed students some of Rembrandt's sketches, and some of them made a face. "But that's so bad and messy! What are all those extra lines for?" I tried to explain, "It's not just the outlines of the horse he was capturing, it's the movement, the feeling of the horse." But they couldn't see it. If you look at how many or most younger people draw today, most of it looks like it's a copies of animé cartoons, or otherwise digitally created images. It's all got these tight, clean lines and filled in color, the kind of drawing that would have been not even considered "art" in the '70s. But tastes do change. These drawing examples would be examples of media influencing one another - in this case, digital media influencing drawing styles.

Many or most people today don't even know the difference between film and video. If you try to mention a difference, you just get a blank stare. At the moment when no one except the most extreme "whiny fetishist" knows what that difference is or can perceive it (even if to those eyes it remains a vast and important difference), then film will cease to exist. And, I imagine, not before.

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Received on Tue Aug 23 2011 - 12:29:09 CDT