Martin Arnold

"Arnold has constructed, in his films PIECE TOUCH√ČE (1989), PASSAGE A L'ACTE (1993) and LIFE WASTES ANDY HARDY (1998), a cinema machine - not simply a custom optical printer or recycling system, but a kind of mnemographic machine, an apparatus that writes and rewrites memories on the surfaces of film. Arnold's cinema functions by incorporating exterior forces, an outside source of energy that presses upon the projected images. In turn, the machine exports text, forming a kind of open economy. ...

"Arnold's cinema, however, is not a smooth machine. The breakdowns, short-circuits and gasps that define his cinema create a violently neurotic machine. (Neurotics, Freud reminds us, distrust their memories to a remarkable extent.) Arnold's machine stutters and twitches from the moment it is turned on. This is due, in part, to the fact that Arnold's cinema barely holds together under the strain of a constant tension between its elements. It is a machine that thematizes even as it reproduces the scene of its own breakdown, obsessively and compulsively." - Akira M. Lippit