By Knowles, Kim; Man Ray, 1890-1976
The yank artist guy Ray used to be essentially the most influential figures of the ancient avant-garde, contributing considerably to the advance of either Dadaism and Surrealism. while his pioneering paintings in images guaranteed him overseas acclaim, his job in different parts, particularly movie, is to today either unknown and undervalued.
in the course of the Nineteen Twenties guy Ray made 4 brief experimental motion pictures and collaborated on a number of different initiatives with humans corresponding to Marcel Duchamp, Fernand Léger, René Clair and Hans Richter. those works, besides a chain of cinematic essays and residential video clips made through the Twenties and Thirties, symbolize crucial contribution to the improvement of another mode of filmmaking within the early 20th century. This booklet explores guy Ray’s cinematic interactions from the viewpoint of his interdisciplinary creative sensibility, growing hyperlinks among movie, images, portray, poetry, track, structure, dance and sculpture. by way of exposing his preoccupation with shape, and his ambiguous courting with the politics and aesthetics of the Dada and Surrealist events, the writer paints an intimate and complicated portrait of guy Ray the filmmaker
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Additional info for A Cinematic Artist : the Films of Man Ray
Here, again in a number of separate shots, a nude torso moves from side to side in front of a window obstructed by blinds, the light from which casts complex shadows onto the body (see figure 7). As the torso turns, the shadows appear to mould themselves to the contours of the body, creating circular formations around the breasts. In ways similar to the image of the egg crate, the striking visual ef fect betrays a meticulous composition. On first viewing, one cannot help but notice the unconventional nature of the film.
Pure cinema’ thus represents what is commonly described as the ‘second avant-garde’, where narrative concerns are replaced with formally determined ones. One of the main features of this kind of cinema is the presence of musical analogies, which were developed particularly by Dulac, but which can be seen as early as 1912 in the cinematic drawings of Leopold Survage. In Germany, a group of painter-filmmakers were demonstrating a similar approach from the beginning of the 1920s. The works of Hans Richter, Viking Eggeling and Walther Ruttman turned away from mimetic representation in order to recreate musical structures through moving abstract shapes and forms.
Man Ray films the lights of the rotating carrousels from a static position, allowing the lights to simply move past the viewer, and then by moving the camera itself, physically following their trajectory. These shots have a generally improvised feel most evident in the movement of the camera, which is jerky and in no way follows a smooth, pre-planned path. The next fifteen seconds of the film represent Man Ray’s attempt to cinematise his own work Danger/Dancer (1920). This ‘airbrush composition of gear wheels’ was apparently ‘inspired by the gyrations of a Spanish dancer’,41 and thus demonstrates a static mechanical representation of human movement.