Peter Gidal: Flare Out

Date: 23 October 2016 | Season: Peter Gidal: Flare Out

23—24 October 2016
New York Anthology Film Archives

“He draws out singularities. He allows the camera only a fenced in area, piecemeal. He lets the gaze hold on objects and constantly repeats … this permits the possibilities of the discrepancies between one’s own seeing and seeing with the camera to become distinct, and this in turn allows for a completely different experience of the surroundings.” (Birgit Hein)

For five decades, Peter Gidal has sought to problematize the film-viewing process by creating works that resist recognition and identification. His practice posits film as a durational experience and negates analysis on psychological grounds. These two programs survey his radical approach, ranging from the seminal early works Hall and Clouds (1969) to the recent Coda I, Coda II and not far at all (2013).

Gidal has lived in the UK since the late 1960s and was a central figure during the formative years of the London Film-Makers’ Co-operative. He is a noted writer and polemicist, whose “Theory and Definition of Structural/Materialist Film” is a key text of avant-garde cinema.

Following the recent publication of a collection of Gidal’s essays, Jonathan Rosenbaum commented: “The singular way that Peter Gidal wrestles with language is a continual lesson in philosophy, aesthetics, ideology, and politics. Flare Out: Aesthetics 1966–2016 charts his ongoing struggles with wit, lucidity, and genuine brio.”

Flare Out: Aesthetics 1966–2016, edited by Mark Webber and Peter Gidal, is published by The Visible Press. In addition to many texts relating to film, it also includes essays on the work of Samuel Beckett, Thérèse Oulton, Gerhard Richter and Andy Warhol.