deranged presents (1)
Raps & Chants 1 with John Broderick - Saul Levine
Science Without Substance - Dan Barnett (U.S. Premier)
Doors Open at 8pm
Films Start at 830pm Sharp!
in lieu of admission written responses to the films will be collected post screening
Notes for SWOS NYC screen
Science Without Substance may be one film in a series of experiments in the construction of a specific kind of musical/linguistic form. At first it was a trilogy, then it became a tetrology then a pentology; and it may well go further. Or, for that matter, it may well wind up being only one film.
As of the moment the Films in Progress are titled:
Prelude: The Morass
Science Without Substance
Substance Without Science
Either or Neither Part 1 (Either)
Either or Neither Part 2( Neither)
So this screening, while it is a U.S. Premier (as these things get touted) it will probably never be repeated. At least in this form. Rather than thinking of this as a work-of-art-to-be it would be much more appropriate to think of this as the first (US) iteration in a series of ever morphing language experiments, that will hopefully spawn intermodal dialogues (as with rRose’s film “Horizons of Meaning”).
As of the moment all five films are in various stages of completion, the work for this evening is the most “finished” but since my goal is to achieve the kind of balance that I think of as “omnivalent” I intend to attempt polishing this potentially 7 or 8 hour long, 5 piece work, into one single form, containing however many statements that survive the process. Therefore I have to think that the shape that this evening’s film is in will have to change, subtly or dramatically, for all the films to fit solidly and precisely into one form.
The project began in the 1980’s as an idea about an impossible communications situation: A Wind of cognitive dissonance has arisen and blows the meaning right out of spoken words, forcing our hapless band of the lost to revert to blink speech, along with scavenged written records of the past. The implications of this state turn out to be grand. Or maybe not…you judge.
In its original form the project won a National Endowment for the Arts grant under the working title: The Marijuana Wind. But I quickly realized that the project was far over my head technically. (So I used the grant money to finish another film (The Chinese Typewriter).
It is a difficult work, both perceptually and conceptually, as all of my more advanced films have been. But of all venues, I have hopes that the staunch and avid viewers of Brooklyn will be up to the task…and will be vocal in their reactions.
So perceptive or ignorant, positive or negative, all feedback is welcome.
A note on this version of the film:
Since I have known from the start that this would doubtless be a many years long project, I put together this cut for a few friends just to get reactions and so I spent very little time on the tail credits - - problematic to say the least since I had forgotten the identities of many of the contributors, especially sound. However this leaves one huge gap, and really does nothing to explain any of the various stimuli for the work.
There was the early idea, born in the 1980’s when Wrick Wolff recorded Alan Bern playing my re-composition of a Mozart Piano Sonata, and I filmed the early scenes of Rosemary Charlesworth flying and Levine and Broderick horsing around.
The second stimulus came many years later when Wrick Wolff sent me a disc of his new sound piece “Dichtung und Wahrheit”. It’s structure was so simultaneously tight as a drum and loose as a goose that I felt another kind of wind, a wind of conceptual refreshment. I then began to listen with ever more attention to other of his sound pieces - Krem de la Kramer, Capish, and others.
At that point I had pretty much given up filmmaking because I hated the editing software available at the time and I was deep into exploring verbal descriptions of the potential of cinema. When a friend insisted I try Apple’s new FInal Cut (FCPX) I was instantly excited by the potential. At the same time I moved and built a much enlarged studio and with it the ability to digitize this old footage. And I begin to play.
But in all of this what seems to get lost is my debt to Wrick not only for his ideas but also allowing me to add yet more chaos to his, by cannibalizing, murdering really, his work. He is yet an even more shadowy figure on the a-g film scene, and as the composer for the late Phil Solomon’s American Falls, somehow slipped beneath the radar again.
I don’t think Wrick is as comfortable beneath the radar as I am, so I truly want his star to shine as you listen to this film.
deranged presents (1)