Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Fog Line

FOG LINE, Larry Gottheim, 1970/16mm/color/silent/10'

I saw this one in 2003's Experimenta Design Designmatography experimental film program, together with ken Jacobs SOFT RAIN. So nice it stuck in my mind.


“It is a small but perfect film.”
Jonas Mekas

“One stares, one stares, and the fog begins to lift, the exquisite image reveals itself. The three patchy trees, the landscape lines, the tension lines, the moving ghost animals, the moving emulsion swirls, all impress themselves on consciousness, are consciousness. Still, rigid lines attempt to contain the amorphous elusive moving fog. Line nature competes with fog nature, but all is harmony, bathed in gorgeous paleness.”
Larry Gottheim

“The metaphor in Fog Line is so delicately positioned that I find myself receding in many directions to discover its source: The Raw and the Cooked? Analytic vs. Synthetic? Town & Country? Ridiculous and Sublime? One line is scarcely adequate to the bounty which hangs from fog & line conjoined.”
Tony Conrad

Fog Line is a wonderful piece of conceptual art, a stroke along that careful line between wit and wisdom—a melody in which literally every frame is different from every preceding frame (since the fog is always lifting) and the various elements of the composition—trees, animals, vegetation,  sky, and, quite importantly, the emulsion, the grain of the film itself—continue to play off one another as do notes in a musical composition. The quality of the light—the tonality of the image itself—adds immeasurably to the mystery and excitement as the work unfolds, the fog lifting, the film running through the gate, the composition static yet the frame itself fluid, dynamic,
magnificently kinetic.”
Raymond Foery