Now available: three exhibition files from Larry Gottheim

Posted February 20th, 2020 in New Acquisitions, New Films, News / Events

Gottheim‘s Cinema is a quest of origins. The films elaborate a response to the fictions of our world, the construction of images and sounds, the repeating cycles of life and nature. The profoundness of Gottheim’s act is to elaborate a body of work outside of fashion and within a search for an authentic language of cinematic discourse.” – John Handhardt, on the occasion of the presentation of the full “Elective Affinities” cycle at the Whitney Museum, 1981

Knot/Not (2019 | 22 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

“KNOT” -wrapping things up, tying things up.
“NOT” – cross out, erasure.

Material from a documentary about conductor Wilhelm F├╝rtwangler, material from a graffiti stencil work on a brick wall near where I live, a stencil of a girl writing something on the wall, what she wrote crossed out by another act of graffiti. These are the main elements. Also footage looking down at the water of Pearl Harbor with the ruins of battleship Arizona beneath. It had turned red with age. And some footage from Manchester the morning after the terrorists struck. All composed against a sound piece, a multiplication table repeated in four languages. Everything superimposed. It’s not just about what it’s about, but also memory, negatives that try to get negated. About music and painting. Politics, longing and regret. Superimposition is the primary device. The doubling and tripling suggest many implications.

Corn (1970 | 11 minutes | COLOR | SILENT)

“This is one of the films that came out of a rejection of expressive camera work, sound, language, editing. I wanted to offer a rich experience of phenomena and associations that could come from a continuous moving image the length of a roll of film. The scene is a space of ceremony, of an offering. This is the world of my house in the country, of my marriage to a potter whose bowl represents her. She is the actor. There are actions that have to do with the transformation of ears of corn into sustenance. These actions take place within a space/time theater of slow continuous changes of light and shadow. There are long spaces where the viewer is free to look at various parts of the screen and, with the steam that rises from the cooked ears, into the very grains of the film itself. The sinuous dance of steam is a counterpart to the fog of FOG LINE. The two films are joined.” -Larry Gottheim

Blues (1969 | 8.5 minutes | COLOR | SILENT)

“A close continuous view of a bowl of blueberries and milk. A spoon comes in and scoops up some of the berries, presumably to be eaten, until they are all gone. The milk, that is always there, manifests itself more and more as the berries are removed and finally seems to rise up and be washed over by light that struck the end of the camera roll as it was removed from the camera. A malfunction with the camera motor of a rare 8mm Bolex produces a regular pulse against the slight flicker of the shutter at silent speed. There are already indications of a mystery as some of the berries move down as though charged by the energy of the camera’s and viewer’s concentration. This is my first real film; all the others rise out of this one.” —Larry Gottheim

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