Close Up

19 January 2010: Michael Robinson – 8 Films

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This programme features 8 films by experimental filmmaker Michael Robinson followed by a Q&A with the artist. Since 2000, Michael Robinson has created a body of film, video and photography work exploring the poetics of loss and the dangers of mediated experience.

"Robinson's collaged films thus do double duty: while pointing to the mechanisms of mediation and manufactured sentiment, he unlocks the power popular images exercise over our psychological and emotional makeup, reconfiguring them in a way that is funny but not ironic, sincere but not naïve, heartfelt but not sentimental." – Henriette Huldisch

And We All Shine on
Michael Robinson
2006 | 7 min | Colour | 16mm

"An ill wind is transmitting through the lonely night, spreading deception and myth along its murky path, singing the dangers of the mediated spirit." – M.R.

If There Be Thorns
Michael Robinson
2009 | 13 min | Colour | Digital

"A dark wave of exile, incest, and magic burns across the tropics, forging a knotted trail into the black hole. Three star-crossed siblings wander in search of one another as a storm of purple prose and easy listening slowly engulfs them." – M.R.

Hold Me Now

Michael Robinson
2008 | 5 min | Colour | Digital

"Plagued by blindness, sloth, and operatic devotion, a troubled scene from Little House On The Prairie offers itself up to karaoke exorcism." – M.R.

You Don't Bring Me Flowers
Michael Robinson
2005 | 8 min | Colour | 16mm

"Viewed at its seams, a slideshow of National Geographic landscapes from the 1960s and 70s deforms into a bright white distress signal." – M.R.

Light Is Waiting
Michael Robinson
2007 | 11 min | Colour | Digital

"A very special episode of television's Full House devours itself from the inside out, excavating a hypnotic nightmare of a culture lost at sea. Tropes of video art and family entertainment face off in a luminous orgy neither can survive." – M.R.

The General Returns From one Place to Another
Michael Robinson
2006 | 11 min | Colour | Digital

"Shaping a concurrently indulgent and sceptical experience of the beautiful, the film draws an uneasy balance between the romantic and the horrid. A Frank O'Hara monologue (from a play of the same title) attempts to undercut the sincerity of the landscape, but there are stronger forces surfacing." – M.R.

All Through the Night
Michael Robinson
2008 | 4 min | Colour | Digital

"A charred visitation with an icy language of control: "there is no room for love". Splinters of Nordic fairy tales and ecological disaster films are ground down into a shimmering prism of contradictions in this hopeful container for hopelessness." – M.R.

Victory Over the Sun
Michael Robinson
2007 | 13 min | Colour | 16mm

"Dormant sites of past World's Fairs breed an eruptive struggle between spirit and matter, ego and industry, futurism and failure. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory; nothing lasts forever even cold November rain." – M.R.