By Elizabeth Legge
An illustrated examine of Michael Snow's "zoom film," which has develop into a touchstone for paintings and movie reports.
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Extra info for Michael Snow: Wavelength (AFTERALL)
87 The actual situation in Wavelength seems more persuasively unstable. At the time, perspective was a bugbear of big minds: Michael Fried dismissed Tony Smith's euphoric account of a joyride on the unfinished New Jersey Turnpike, enhanced by the 'approach or onrush' of perspective, as a kind of perceptual cheap thrill. 88 If, as Snow argued, Wavelength had 'no perspectival space', then his point was surely made in the context of McLuhan's premise that the content of every new medium is the form of a prior medium.
Materials are, of course, key: while Snow's Knokke-le-Zoute statement gives the impression of the film as an austere, aerated structure of abstracted equivalences and ideas, it was actually made as a complexly layered, handled, handmade, accretive physical project, in which film was marked, spliced and optically altered: 1. 2. I decided on the duration. The film was shot on 100-jt rolls of 16mm film, of various stocks. 100ft is a little less than 3 minutes. It was going to use 16 to 18 rolls. I put a piece of white tape on the zoom lens.
64 Time and Space In his Knokke-le-Zoute statement Snow restaged the classical unities of time, space and action as the 'cosmic equivalents of setting, action, zoom and room'; in doing so, he signalled by echo location his own position within dominant moves and discourses. It has been argued that the 1960s marked a spatial turn in Western culture, in both science and in art, in which space - physical, mental, natural, social, imaginary - was no longer thought of as an inert container for historical operations nor as a dead ground for the passage of time.
Michael Snow: Wavelength (AFTERALL) by Elizabeth Legge