By P. Gaal-Holmes
This complete historic account demonstrates the wealthy range in Seventies British experimental filmmaking, performing as a kind of reclamation for movies and filmmakers marginalized inside verified histories. An vital e-book for practitioners, historians and critics alike, it offers new interpretations of this wealthy and numerous historical past.
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Additional info for A History of 1970s Experimental Film: Britain’s Decade of Diversity
31 These, he said, would in all likelihood be determined by the different media rather than on creative merit. He gave the example of the artist, Dan Flavin’s mass-produced neon tubes which 40 years later have to be hand-produced to preserve the work. ’32 Both Curtis and Rees acknowledged the challenges involved in acquiring or documenting such works for posterity but urged that this was not a call for complacency. They argued that compromises should be sought where actual works could not be displayed, as the misleading histories held in public collections did little to accommodate the diversity of works produced prior to the mid-1990s, thereby offering a problematically unrepresentative view of moving image history.
It would be interesting to know which ‘underground’ these films were part of? e. distanced from the main critical spheres of influence (structural and material experimentation). Additionally, other filmmakers such as Margaret Tait, Peter Whitehead and Jane Arden also made image-rich experimental films in the decade. These explicit (but contradictory) accounts of inclusion and exclusion certainly raise some questions about the positioned nature of histories and how historical canons might be created and maintained.
Problematically, as with the single-screen films, this abundant history was almost non-existent in state collections: These were the key players in the late 1970s [and] early ‘80s. It was in these galleries that the film and video installation as we now know it – single-screen, multi-image or mixed media – was born. 29 Curtis went on to discuss the wide range of site-specific or livecinema film works shown in public-sector galleries, lamenting their Questions of History 21 exclusion from collections.