Close Up

30 October 2012: Gustav Deutsch: Film Ist. [1-12]


Film Ist. [1-12]
Gustav Deutsch
1996-2002 | 150 min | Colour | Beta SP

We are very excited to present the uncut version of Gustav Deutsch's Film ist. (1-12).

"Film archives are not simply repositories of the world's masterpieces of Cinematic Art, but also Aladdin caves of treasures unnamed and unnumbered. These films (especially the instructional and scientific films Deutsch pillages in the chapters 1 through 6) are not great work of art, but rather mines containing moments of unbelievable beauty and grace, unnameable terror and uncanny revelations." – Tom Gunning

Film Ist. approaches the principles which lie at the foundation of the media. This project does not claim to be a theoretical work, but tries, on the basis of extensive work with the subject, to track down some of the building blocks of perception and some of the effects of moving images. The product is neither a scientific analysis nor documentation but rather an artistic experiment. The gaze back to the beginnings of the medium is meant to be focused in the present by its use of contemporary means (montage techniques, loops, soundtrack, etc.) and at the same time to face the direction of the future.

"I have been working on this project since 1996, and the first results was Film ist. (1-6), completed in 1998. These initial chapters, which are set up as a tableau film, were dedicated to the scientist's laboratory as one of the birthplaces of films. Footage from scientific films provided a starting point for the compilation of individual chapters, which were given  the following titles: Film ist. 1. Movement and Time; 2. Light and Darkness; 3. An Instrument; 4. Material; 5. A Blink of an Eye; 6. Mirror.

From 1999 to 2002 I worked on the next six chapters, which deal with the fairground and variety theatre as film's second birthplace. The main theme is the beginning of film asa a medium of entertainment. The titles of these chapters are: Film ist. 7. Comic; 8. Magic; 9. Conquest; 10. Writing and Language 11. Emotions and Passion; 12. Memory and Document." – Gustav Deutsch

This screening is kindly supported by Sixpack Film