- Abigail Child |
- 1986 |
- 5 minutes |
- B&W |
Rental Format(s): 16mm
With Diane Torr, Sally Silvers, Plauto, Elion Sacker. Sound improvisations: Charles Noyes and Christian Marclay.
An homage to silent films: the clash of ambiguous innocence and unsophisticated villainy. Seduction, revenge, jealousy, combat. The isolation and dramatization of emotions through the isolation (camera) and dramatization (editing) of gesture. I had long conceived of a film composed only of reaction shots in which all causality was erased. What would be left would be the resonant voluptuous suggestions of history and the human face. PERILS is a first translation of these ideas.
"In the years to come the scenario as a product of literary composition will completely disappear." - Dziga Vertov, 1923
Two forefronts of attack: continuity and modelling.
Continuity in the Hollywood sense has never seemed true to life to me, not to my experiences, not to memory, and not to the weather. What seems truer is something that skips, makes leaps, surprising connections. This seems to me the real mirror of 'life-likeness': discontinuous and irregular.
Modelling: the crass commercial images held out to us in modern life. The image of model takes hold, distorts, fixes itself as the image (false) of what we #should be# (illegal term). A channelling that limits. I want to use or misuse the #trash# that has infiltrated our lives: the slogans, the muzak, the posture, the proper. Not to limit myself to what I now imagine is the correct position, but to place the accustomed mode in its true position of the absurd#so that you and I sense its ridiculousness. Then, this becomes a model: without fixtures, without a leg, defined in humor, the double-take. A state of interruption, a matrix of interrogation.
Thus: PERILS, (5min 1986. l6mm b/w)-a homage to silent film-the clash of ambiguous innocence and unsophisticated villainy-dramatizing the theatrical postures of melodrama to reconstruct our ideas of romance, action, and drama. "I had long conceived of a film composed only of reaction shots in which all causality was erased. What would be left would be the resonant voluptuous suggestions of history and the human face." - AC
The sound montage was edited by Child from Warner Brothers cartoons and improvisations by Charles Noyes and Christian Marclay.
Exhibited widely with Series and alone. Incuding: Belgian Courtisane Fest in Ghent, in conjunction with Ken Jacobs retrospective (2014); BELATED BOHEMIA: Art and Identity in the East Village: 2-day symposium, April 11-12, 2003. Curated by Ed Halter; New Music America, at "Montreal Musiques Actuelles" Festival 1990.