Thursday, February 25, 2010
Artists and amateurs
This week we studied the amazing amusing films of American artist Joseph Cornell, locating them at the intersection of his deep involvement with collage and his love for the cinema. "ROSE HOBART" (1936)is his infamous 16mm film-collage portrait of the actress Rose Hobart made from the 1931 jungle drama "East of Borneo" in which the artist essentially excises from the film all that is not the object of his devotion. Your fearless leader spent many years holed up at Anthology Film Archives studyng and cataloging his film collection, and wrote this monograph for the SFMOMA Cornell exhibition a few years back.
Looking further then into amateur film--home movies, family films and personal archives . Abigail Child's The Future is Behind You (2004) was one example of an artist using films from a family's collection and creating her own story around those images and people--if you liked that you might be interested in reading a short interview with her in the Wees book as well.
The first real history on that subject was Patricia Zimmerman's Reel Families: A Social History of the Amateur Film (1995), Here's an excerpt for you!