Monday, November 12, 2007

A Dam Building in 1953, Godard

I have always been very fond of this film Godard made when working as a labourer on a dam project, he filmed the work. I always felt that the montage and images in this film influenced me...above is small excerpt...

I suggested earlier in my last post that Godard 's has a very unusual narrative style and I associate it with abstraction. Mister Anchovy god bless him actually read my comments and said "I don't relate Goddard's narratives to any abstract painting tradition. I'm not sure he would be very comfortable with that idea either. I've never actually thought about a movie-maker in those terms. Interestingly, there are a number of musicians that I feel make music that is very much akin to abstract painting. The example that leaps to mind is Ornette Coleman. In fact I sometimes listen to Ornette Coleman when I'm working in the studio for just that reason."

Mister Anchovy is correct, that Godard would be very uncomfortable with that notion. Fortunately...audiences don't have to give the artist or writer any heed when it comes to what we think of the art. Godard and several of his peers believed that film was rooted and was absolutly suited to representation of "realism". Of course, he was completely wrong. It is impossible to be realistic outside of reality. And actually, I believe it's impossible to make an abstract painting or image.


I think the peers within French New Wave described themselves inaccurately when in fact, it is Hollywood that is closer to traditional ideas of realism: Hollywood movies are like the Renaiasance period: and fixed on acheiving a believability. And Godard is more of his time locked between abstract expressionism and pop art. Godard rejected Hollywood, and his movies took storytelling to before fastpaced a way that I believe Rothko took paintings back to the beginning: Godard took film back to the beginning. What originally was a political thesis in Godard is not an overwhelming spiritual mood rejecting the materialism of contemporary life. But Godard might disagree with me. Funny, Ornette Coleman is the exact same age as Godard...and Godards sountracks have much in common with the music associated with Philip Guston and Mark Rothko. (avant garde, Morton Feldman, Gerorges Delerue, pop classical, experimental...until he made RS movie)

1 comment:

Gardenia said...

I may be way off base but I really liked this clip; the way the machines were simplified - and yes, I would say abstraction in that way because that's the only way I've thought of abstraction (being painting is always on my mind and I'm certainly not known for abstraction of my words!) - I'm not qualified to comment on the abstraction of the narrative - the second clip was entirely energetic - could sense this frenetic energy that was exploding. Perhaps I need to acquaint myself with this Godard...

Am I correct in seeing a bit more where your films are coming from?