The contemporary works discussed in this article emerge from a wider desire in experimental film to (re)discover the aesthetic and critical potential of celluloid as it shifts, to employ the terminology coined by Raymond Williams, from the dominant to the residual. This desire can be observed in the worldwide proliferation of artist-run film labs since the mid-1990s, where an economy of recuperation, re-use, and recycling of old materials represents a stark alternative to ‘an economy utterly dependent on disposability’ and a throwaway culture of constant upgrades and relentlessly ‘new’ electronic goods. Based on the model of the London Filmmakers Co-op established in 1967, these interconnected hubs of artistic experimentation foster an artisanal do-it-yourself ethos that bypasses traditional industrial processes in favour of individual hands-on experimentation. Alongside this, many filmmakers are venturing beyond conventional filmmaking techniques by using food, household products, and, in the case of the films discussed here, bodily fluids as a way of producing images. As the British artist Vicky Smith has pointed out, in the current climate of celluloid obsolescence the experimental filmmaker is now ‘forced back to their own body as a resource’. I would like to explore here how such practices allow us to reconceptualise the way we think about cinematic materiality and its relationship to the body. During a period of technological transition – the rise of digital media and the subsequent gradual phasing out of celluloid film – medium-specificity has become invariably intertwined with issues of obsolescence and the outmoded, as well as questions of cultural value and waste.
|Cyfnodolyn||NECSUS : European Journal of Media Studies|
|Statws||Cyhoeddwyd - 08 Tach 2013|