Exquisit Corpses

  • Dana Plays |
  • 2010 |
  • 10 minutes |
  • COLOR/B&W |
Sale Format(s): DVD

Exquisit Corpses is a formal study that alludes to the decay of cinema and the advancing of
digital film through a series of devolving images from the history of photography, and early motion
picture technology.

Dana Plays uses random chance operations of the exquisite corpse, by creating vertical triptychs, and mixed frame combinations, of stacked motion picture footage of Muybridge's horse in motion, Edison early toys with her own footage shot with a 16mm camera of the subway train arriving at the station, and animal locomotion study she shot in high speed digital cinematography.

The exquisite corpse was a word and picture game used by the surrealists and later a child's
game that evolved into a triptych of a drawing made with a paper folded in threes. Ultimately the
film is a reflexive comment on narrativity as it interweaves image and text, of Plays' evolving
historical project, the story of Ottilie Moore, her great aunt who provided safe haven for refuges,
including the Jewish at Villa L'Hermitage, in Villefranche sur- Mer, in the late 30s and early 40s.

Through complex structural and formal approaches, including vertical and horizontal structures,
Plays visually explores the intersections between private and public histories, making
metaphorical connections between location, setting and place, oral and written story telling and
refers to the devolving process of history of motion picture film, from the silent era with use of
inter-title text and image combinations.

This piece was made by Plays using her digital JK Optical Printer optical printer to reprocess
found footage she salvaged from dumpsters. The piece has evolved from a series of digital
installations exhibited in Prague, Czech Republic, at the Skolska 28 Gallery, and an earlier
permutation of this piece exhibited as part of the Film Lingual II exhibition, at C. Emerson Fine
Arts Gallery in St. Petersburg Florida curated by Lori Johns.


Atlantic Pacific Prize, Ybor Festival of the Moving Image


Athens International Film Festival (Ohio)
Flex Experimental Film Festival

Sale Prices

  Individual Institution
DVD $40.00 $160.00

Purchase this Film