Phil Solomon: Programme 2

Date: 27 October 2011 | Season: London Film Festival 2011, Phil Solomon | Tags:

Thursday 27 October 2011, at 7pm
London Tate Modern

Phil Solomon, 1983, 16mm, colour, silent, 8 min
“Adopting its title from a poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay, What’s Out Tonight Is Lost is an elegiac film sifting through the unrecoverable. The film is a reflecting pool where vision breaks up. The home we recognize is swallowed in the brume, the light barely penetrates; and the yellow school bus steals us away, delivering us into new clouds, embracing fear. The film has a surface of cracked porcelain and intaglio: the allergic childhood skin of cracks and bruises. This is a film of transubstantiations, the discorporation of human forms into embers. Air looms and blossoms into solidity and nearness … I hear it breathing …” (Mark McElhatten)

Phil Solomon, 2001, 16mm, colour, sound, 10 min
“A little Nachtmusik, a deep blue overture to the series. Breathing in the cool night airs, breathing out a children’s song; then whispering a prayer for a night of easeful sleep. My blue attempt at a sequel to Rose Hobart.” (Phil Solomon)

Phil Solomon, 1980, 16mm, b/w, silent, 10 min
“Its setting is a suburban neighbourhood populated by kids at play and indistinct but ominous parental figures. A submerged narrative rehearses a type of young boy’s night-time game in which a flashlight is wielded in a darkened room to produce effects of aerial combat and bombardment. A sense of hostility tinged with terror seeps into commonplace movements … Fantasy merges with nightmare, a war of dimly suppressed emotions rages beneath a veneer of household calm … In Nocturne, found footage is worked so subtly into the fabric of threat that its comes as a shock ploughed from the unconscious.” (Paul Arthur)

Phil Solomon & Stan Brakhage, 2002, 16mm, colour, silent, 15 min
“Brakhage’s frame by frame hand carvings and etchings directly into the film emulsion, sometimes combined with paint, are illuminated by Solomon’s optical printing, then edited by Solomon into a four part seasonal cycle‚. This film can be considered to be part of a larger work by Brakhage entitled “”. Seasons… is inspired by the colours and textures found in the woodcuts of Hokusai and Hiroshige, and the playful sense of forms dancing in space from the filmworks of Robert Breer and Len Lye.” (Phil Solomon)

Phil Solomon, 1989/94, 16mm, colour, sound, 17 min
“In the melancholic Remains to Be Seen, dedicated to the memory of Solomon’s mother, the scratchy rhythm of a respirator intones menace. The film, optically crisscrossed with tiny eggshell cracks, often seems on the verge of shattering. The passage from life into death is chartered by fugitive images: pans of an operating room, an old home movie of a picnic, a bicyclist in vague outline against burnt orange and blue … Solomon measures emotions with images that seem stolen from a family album of collective memory.” (Manohla Dargis, Village Voice)

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