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Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Today I spoke for about 3/4 hour over a web cam with June Madeley's media course in St. John New Brunswick. She showed three of my Toxic films then I said stuff like

"I will be using the term “experimental” to refer to a large range of alternative approaches to media, with a focus of celluloid film. The term experimental is often contested due to its inaccuracy; an experienced “experimental” filmmaker generally works with known variables with predetermined, calculated outcomes and is doing no more experimentation than a narrative or documentary filmmaker may be. Another term often used is Avant Garde, but this too is often criticized. Its original usage is military, referring to a troop which goes in advance of the main army, and was brought into use as a reference to innovative artists in the early 20th century. While some artists feel the term lends respectability to their craft, others are uncomfortable with the association with military and some feel that the term continues to be tied to early 20th century art and the labeling of current practitioners similarly is both pretentious and ostentatious. Other terms have also been used without ever managing to unify the entire arena under one banner. “Independent”, “fringe”, “non-mainstream”, “micro”, “alternative”, “art film” and other labels are equally inaccurate and are have been used to describe a range of non or less commercial cinema that has been created outside of the large television or studio systems but continue to be based in traditional dramatic or documentary approaches. The continued debate about semantics is best left for another paper. I will henceforth use “experimental” to refer all this milieu and all quotation marks will be dropped from this point on. "
.... and so on, and so on...

June says some of them must have been listening since she saw them checking out Michael Snow's Wavelength on Youtube. It is a really horrible unwatchable copy ..... and not enough
of it (there is only the last 10 minutes of the total 45).

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