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A Video Tribute to Bruce ConnerArchives.html

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October  2010                                                                    15:15

click to C MOVIE

    Above, is my tribute video to Bruce Conner... who died 7 July 2008.  Conner’s work greatly parallels mine.  Below, are pages from my dog-eared copy of Catherine Russell’s excellent book  Experimental Ethnography (1999).   Russell’s explication of the origins of ethnographic montage is an important read.  I could have paraphrased her words here in an attempt to make them seem mine.  Instead, I choose to scan and upload her actual text, as a personal reminder of the vitality and importance of reflexive appropriation.  (Which might suggest, “I’m stealing Russell’s words.”   But since she already knows, and apparently welcomes my advance, maybe it’s not stealing after all, right?)

    The images in this tribute video are taken entirely from one History Channel feature program on the “end of days” topic, entitled Seven Signs of the Apocalypse.  I watched this info-excrement in its entirety on my 9” TV.  There was little worthwhile in the program.  Its image construction, however, uncannily speaks to a classical surrealistic approach during early 1950s-60s montage filmmaking -- ‘found material’ combined into expressions of cultural dissensus.  And North American TV is always first a mode of dissensus over consensus, so wall-to-wall images like these are the norm today not the exception.

      Likewise here with my video C Movie, I have simply appropriated and re-purposed these History Channel images -- chronologically -- as seen on my home TV and with little other compositional effort.   The sound track (audio montage is something both Conner and Russell oddly neglect to address) is an exemplar of aural, remix performance art -- I‘m sorry to say I have no record of its origin -- it is simply something I “picked-up along the way”.  Once re-combined here however, image, sound and text conflate into a powerful, experimental, visual performance -- a performance maybe not unlike Conner’s A Movie.  At bottom, however, and contrary to Russell, I do not value either Conner’s A Movie nor this C Movie to be media ethnography... at least not the critical experimental variety Cultural Farming promotes.

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An American

resident of Canada, experimenting with new forms of critical media ethnography in Cultural Farming.


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