Right, I see that point.

btw, One only has to read Stan's chapter on Bruce to get an idea of the price he paid for that art world notoriety and the consequences on his health!


In any case, the L.A. museum for that retrospective had special darkened rooms built in the gallery where you could sit down and watch the films. There was a nice separation in those spaces from any other distractions. The whole retrospective had a tone of high respect for Bruce and all his work, it was one of the best shows I had seen that (at least) included film presentations. The usual presentations of videos in museums have never had quite the same impact, maybe because other people sitting there watching are as if they were home watching tv.

Are we talking of film shows within a museum's gallery space as opposed to museums which also have dedicated film theaters separate but on the premises, or even something like the juxtaposition of Pacific Film Archive with the Berkeley Museum? I am a bit out of touch, how many major museums in the country have such theaters with well maintained projection equipment? What is the current state of these museum film theaters generally?

Myron Ort


On Mar 4, 2012, at 11:30 PM, marilyn brakhage wrote:

I didn't see that exhibition, unfortunately. But Bruce Conner also had a gallery/art world history and connections for his work in other media, aside from film. It's the people who are "only" filmmakers who sometimes have more of a struggle with getting their work shown as it should be.

Marilyn

On 4-Mar-12, at 6:31 PM, Myron Ort wrote:

all I know is how impressed I was with the Bruce Conner retrospective in Los Angeles at MOCA a many few years ago. All of his modes of working were well presented.
Bruce Conner!

Myron Ort



On Mar 4, 2012, at 6:19 PM, marilyn brakhage wrote:

Thanks for the feedback. It would be interesting to hear more on the subject from people around at the time -- as well as the latest experiences other people are having.

Marilyn

On 4-Mar-12, at 2:45 PM, Chuck Kleinhans wrote:

I thought Marilyn Brakhage's response to the Erika Balsom essay was outstanding, and I hope it will be reprinted in Moving Image Arts Journal so it circulates more directly where historians and scholars might find it in the future.

Greybeards like me on the Frameworks listserv can easily add to the main points Marilyn makes about Stan Brakhage per se and about the commercial and gallery and museum art world of the time.

I vividly remember a dinner with Stan Brakhage (and others) at the University of Oregon perhaps 20 years ago when he was screening some of his films. The discussion got into the matter of Turner's paintings and light, and Brakhage was quite passionate about which museums had which paintings and had displayed them to best advantage. The next morning I ran into him on the main campus quadrangle, camera in hand, filming what interested him, while he was waiting for the University Art Museum to open.

Two points that others might be able to develop more in dialogue with Balsom's thesis:

a. animation, particularly drawn animation, has always had a more ambiguous relation to the traditional format/materials art world, perhaps mostly because almost all its artists have drawing skills and craft, which is more easily understood. Most art schools (used to) have first year drawing course requirements.

b. there was a discussion c. 1970, and I think in Canyon Cinemanews, about establishing the "rare value" of film and its collectability, by making things such as unique editions of films (such as S8mm copies that collectors could buy and presumably view at home) or by making single unique films which would then be sold to collectors or museums. Of course this was also part of an art world discussion/quandary at the time when another mass reproduceable art--photography--was entering the art market (and museum collections).


Chuck Kleinhans







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