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Is this really art?

Last class we viewed a handful of films that fall under the category of Experimental/Avant-garde. From this hand full, only a couple seemed good to me. The film, Go Go Go was a great idea; it showed us around New York city, giving us a perfect feel of what it feels like to be there. The sped up motion complimented this quite nicely, representing the hustle and bustle in the city. This was a true work of art by presenting a BIG idea into such a small package successfully.

But Like I said earlier, not all were so well made in my opinion. Meshes of the Afternoon, though very interesting, was a film that really just went too far. The cinematography was very well done creating a steady stream of visuals that really gets you to pay attention; however this alone can’t hide the fact that it seems like a random collection of ideas jammed into a nicely rapped package. I feel there comes a point with Abstract projects where it loses its meaning and just becomes nothing. This film, although not my favorite, doesn’t take the cake.

Mothlight… Hmmmm where to begin with this one. Let’s start with the fact that this man is clearly on something. This “film” is in no way, shape, or form a piece of art to me. All this “film” was, was pieces of dead moths(a clear sign of mental problems) and leaves, glued onto a piece of film. Without being directly told what all of this is suppose to mean, we would have no clue as to what the point was….. at all. Art needs to be able to express one’s ideas into something that people can actually extract them from(keep in mind there’s always room for different interpretations). So to conclude, let me just say this: I’m a fan of art and I respect it but just because one person says something is art doesn’t make it true, and that goes for me as well.

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~ by kevinvelez on December 7, 2010.

5 Responses to “Is this really art?”

  1. I think the reason that films like Mothlight are so interesting has absolutely nothing to do with the film itself. If I hadn’t heard that interview clip before we heard the film, I would have hated it. As it was, I feel like it would be much cooler if it were displayed like real artwork – if they took the film strip with the moths and laid it out in a museum. That would have been cool and interesting, but as a stand-alone film I agree that it doesn’t hold my attention.

    (I do think art is completely subjective, but in a way that everything is art if you want it to be. I could never declare something as “not-art” even if that wasn’t the way I see it. but that’s just me.)

  2. I think the purpose of Avant-grade films is for you to interpret it however you want to. You saw Mouthlight as something buy a guy on drugs; cool (it did make me laugh lol). It’s your opinion. I don’t think a film like that has a plot that everyone is gunna get the same reaction to, you know?
    I found them all funny, to be honest! The one about the cars was hysterical. I actually went home to find who sang the cover of Dream Lover that was played over everything. Listened to it 5 times already lmaooo.

  3. hahahah yeah they were funny(especially the car one) but I did mention that that was only my opinion, and you have a good point on how its about our interpretation.

  4. I agree with your idea about seeing the film strip displayed in a museum or something. It would have been more interesting. Now as to whether or not something is art or not can never be determined by one person, I was just expressing my ideas on art…. but I’m really interested in the last words in your comment. It’s given me something to think about

  5. The issue of whether or not something can be considered art is one that has plagued us since the beginning of philosophy. Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion in the matter.

    As for films like Mothlight, it can be really hard to understand and/or appreciate something so abstract. When facing films like this, best thing to do is just try and figure out what the filmmaker/artist was trying to do or say. In the case of Mothlight, he was trying to give life back to the dead moths. By placing them on the film and “playing it” the flutter and rapid movement almost looks like live moths fluttering about.

    It is definitely unusual, and has very little to do with the normal conventions of cinema, but avant-garde and experimental cinema is mostly about pushing the envelope and trying to stretch the idea of “film” to something different.

    I’m sorry it was so annoying for you. Sometimes you get to understand it, sometimes the meaning only makes sense to the filmmaker, and sometimes you’ve just got to watch it, shake your head and say: “Woah, that was weird,” and move on with life.

    Anyway, that was my two cents.

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