303 GALLERY AGE OF AQUARIUS AI WEIWEI ALDO MONDINO ALIGHIERO BOETTI ALLORA & CALZADILLA AMSTERDAM ANDREAS GURSKY ANDREAS SCHON ANDY CROSS ANDY WARHOL ANISH KAPOOR ANNE IMHOF ANSELM KIEFER ANTON CORBIJN ARNDT ARNOLFINI ART PROSPECT ARTISSIMA ARTIST BOOK ATTILA CSORGO BALI BARBARA KRUGER BARCELONA BASEL BASQUIAT BEATRIX RUF BELA KOLAROVA BENJAMIN DEGEN BEPI GHIOTTI BERLIN BERND E HILLA BECHER BETTY WOODMAN BIENNALE BORIS MIKHAILOV BRISTOL BROOKLYN MUSEUM CAI GUO-QIANG CAMILLE HENROT'S CANDIDA HOFER CARDI GALLERY CARL ANDRE CAROL RAMA CAROLEE SCHNEEMANN CARSTEN HOLLER CASTELLO DI RIVARA CASTELLO DI RIVOLI CATHERINE AHEARN CENTRE POMPIDOU CHARLES RAY CHARLINE VON HEYL CHICAGO CHRIS BURDEN CHRIS WATSON CHRISTIAN BOLTANSKI CHRISTIE'S CHTO DELAT COLOGNE CONCEPTUALISM COPENHAGEN COSMIC CONNECTIONS CRISTIAN BOLTANSKY CY TWOMBLY DAMIEN HIRST DAN GRAHAM DANH VO DANIEL EDLEN DANIEL RICH DANNY MC DONALD DAVID ZWIRNER DIA ART FOUNDATION DIET WIEGMAN DIETER ROTH DOCUMENTA DUBAI DUSSELDORF ED ATKINS EDEN EDEN ELGER ESSER EMILIO ISGRO' ESKER FOUNDATION ETTORE SPALLETTI EVA HESSE EVA PRESENHUBER FANG LIJUN FAUSTO MELOTTI FELIX GONZALES-TORRES FILIPPO SCIASCIA FONDATION BEYELER FONDATION CARTIER FONDAZIONE MERZ FRANCESCO BONAMI FRANCESCO POLI FRANCESCO VEZZOLI FRANCIS BACON FRANKFURT FRANZ KLINE FRIEDMAN GABRIEL OROZCO GABRIEL YARED GAM GARY ROUGH GEORGE BURGES MILLER GEORGE HENRY LONGLY GERHARD RICHTER GILBERT & GEORGE GIULIO PAOLINI GLADSTONE GALLERY GREENE NAFTALI GUENZANI GUGGENHEIM GUGGENHEIM BERLIN GUGGENHEIM BILBAO GUILLAUME LEBLON HAMBURG HAMBURGER BAHNHOF HAMISH FULTON HANGAR BICOCCA HAUSDERKUNST HAUSER & WIRTH HE XIANGYU HELENA ALMEIDA HEMA UPADHYAY HENRY MOORE HIROSHI SUGIMOTO HOWIE TSUI HUANG YONG PING IAN BREAKWELL ICA ICHWAN NOOR INSTALLATION INTERVIEW ISABELLA BORTOLOZZI ISTAMBUL JAMES LAVADOUR'S ROSE JAMES MELINAT JAMIE XX JANET CARDIFF JANNIS KOUNELLIS JASSIE BOSWELL JEFF KOONS JEPPE HEIN JESSICA WARBOYS JIVYA SOMA MASHE JOAN FONTCUBERTA JOHN BALDESSARRI JOHN MCCRACKEN JOHN STEZAKER JON RAFMAN JORG SASSE JOSEPH KOSUTH JOTA CASTRO JURGEN TELLER KARA TANAKA KARL ANDERSSON KARLSRUHE KAVIN APPEL KONRAD LUEG KUNSTHAUS KUNSTMUSEUM LARRY BELL LIA RUMMA LISSON GALLERY LIU YE LONDON LOUISE BOURGEOIS LUC TUYMANS LUCIAN FREUD LUCIE STAHL LUIGI MAINOLFI LUISA RABBIA MADRE MAM PARIS MARC QUINN MARCO CASSANI MARIA CRISTINA MUNDICI MARIAN GOODMAN MARINA ABRAMOVIC MARIO MERZ MARK LECKEY MARK ROTHKO MARTIN KIPPENBERGER MARTIN McGEOWN MARZIA MIGLIORA MASSIMO DE CARLO MATTHEW BARNEY MAURIZIO CATTELAN MAX SCHAFFER MAXXI MIAMI MIKE PARR MILAN MIMMO ROTELLA MING WONG MOMA MONTREAL MOUSSE MUMBAI MUYBRIDGE NATIONAL GALLERY NEW YORK NICO MUHLY NOBUYOSHI ARAKI NOTTINGHAM CONTEMPORARY NY OFCA INTERNATIONAL OLAFUR ELIASSON OSCAR MURILLO OTTO PIENE PACE GALLERY PAOLA PIVI PAOLO CURTONI PARIS PAUL MCCARTHY PERFORMANCE PHILIP GLASS PHILIP-LORCA DICORCIA PHILIPPE PERRENO PHILLIPS DE PURY PHOTOGRAPHY PIA STADTBAUMER PIPILOTTI RIST PORTRAITS PRISCILLA TEA RAPHAEL HEFTI REBECCA HORN RICHARD LONG RICHARD SERRA RICHARD T. WALKER RICHARD TUTTLE RINEKE DIJKSTR ROBERT MORRIS ROBERT SMITHSON ROBERT SMITHSON'S ROBIN RHODE ROMA RON MUECK RUDOLF HERZ RUDOLF STIEGEL RUDOLF STINGEL SAM FRANCIS SANTIAGO SERRA SARAH SUZUKI SCULPTURE SHARJAH BIENNAL SHIGERU TAKATO SIMON THOMPSON SOL LEWITT SOPHIE CALLE SPY STEDELIJK MUSEUM STEPHAN BELKENHOL STEVE MCQUEEN STEVE REINKE SUBODH GUPTA SUSAN PHILIPSZ TALA MADANI TATE BRITAIN TATE BRITIAN TATE MODERN TERESA MARGOLLES THADDAEUS ROPAC THE RENAISSENCE SOCIETY THOMAS EGGERER THOMAS HIRSCHHORN THOMAS RUFF THOMAS SARACENO THOMAS STRUTH TIM FAIN TOBIAS ZIELONY TOM FRIEDMAN TONY COKES TONY CONRAD TONY CRAGG TOO MUCH TOTAH TOZER PAK TURIN TURNER PRIZE UGO RONDINONE UK ULAY VANESSA BEECROFT VENICE BIENNALE VERA LUTTER VICTOR MOSCOSO VICTORIA MIRO VIENNA VIK MUNIZ VOID SERIES WHITE CUBE WHITECHAPEL GALLERY WIELS WILLIAMS PRESENHUBER WU TSANG YAN PEI-MING YANG YONGLIANG YOHJI YAMAMOTO YOKO ONO YUSUKE BENDAI YVES KLEIN ZHANG DAQIAN ZURICH
VAPRICO #152 ANTIDISCIPLINE
Readymade, handmade weight, concrete, plastic pipe and stainless steel 100x100x18,5cm
INDISCIPLINATO | Solo Exhibition of Marco Cassani
|Morgan Fisher, Ilford Selochrome 120 September 1954, 2014. Archival pigment print, 40.6 x 50.8 cm. Image courtesy of Maureen Paley, London.|
Morgan Fisher's "Past Present, Present Past" at Maureen Paley, London
November 24, 2014–January 25, 2015
|Since Susan Sontag announced the demise of cinephilia in her prescient 1996 essay "The Decay of Cinema," discourses around the death of cinema have been widespread, fuelled in part by the replacement of celluloid by digital technology. Since our understanding of the world has been so influenced by movies—one irrevocably conditioning the other—cinema's apparent passing has caused pain, and trauma.|
By 2012 the digital takeover of film exhibition was complete. It had been threatened for almost a decade, but it was nevertheless shocking to see 35mm projectors evicted from projection booths across Western Europe and North America. Only a year earlier, British artist Tacita Dean had declared that UNESCO should recognize film as part of a universal cultural heritage, paying homage to it with her installation FILM (2011) at Tate Modern, London. The Austrian filmmaker Peter Kubelka labeled 2012 as film history's darkest year, and produced Monument Film—a work which is impossible to stage digitally—"as a call for patient defiance."(1)
Whether working with film, painting, or photography, Los Angeles-based artist Morgan Fisher produces works that closely examine their medium. Best known for his 16mm films, which bring together industrial film practices and visual arts strategies, Fisher is a conceptual filmmaker who turns film into a form of research. In the aftermath of the digital takeover of cinema, "Past Present, Present Past," Fisher's first solo exhibition at Maureen Paley in London, provides a timely and poignant reflection on technological obsolescence and the death of analog film.
This is most explicit in a series of 12 new photographs of unused boxes of still film from the 1950s, the decade when the artist's father introduced him to photography. Not only do most of these manufacturers no longer exist, but the expiration dates printed on the boxes are now long past. As Fisher writes in the exhibition notes, they are useless, "at least with respect to their original purpose, their uselessness underlined by the fact that photography on film as an amateur practice is essentially extinct."
The photographs are displayed together with two older works: one of Fisher's early films, Production Footage(1971), and a video diptych, Red Boxing Gloves / Orange Kitchen Gloves, that was originally shot on Polavision in 1980. The double screen video projection of Red Boxing Gloves occupies the exhibition space downstairs. Upstairs, the twelve photographs—arranged symmetrically in rows of six—provide an anteroom for the custom-built cinema where Production Footage is screened on 16mm.
In Production Footage, Fisher stages and documents an encounter between two models of 16mm cameras—a Mitchell and an Eclair—and the two modes of filmmaking that they represent: Hollywood and independent cinema. The film, modular in its composition, as are most of Fisher's films, consists of two shots of equal length. The first shows fellow filmmaker Thom Andersen loading a 200-foot roll of film into the Mitchell camera. The second, shot by Andersen on the film that we've just seen loaded, shows Fisher unloading a 200-foot roll from the Eclair. In many ways, this is a quintessential Fisher film. Similarly to Production Stills—shot the previous year, in 1970, but not included in this exhibition—it is a film that documents its own production. But here the artist does not resort to the mediation of photography. Rather, he documents the making of the film directly on the film itself. Production Footage operates in a mode of contrast and contradiction, between movement and stasis, color and black-and-white, and ultimately between two distinct and conflicting forms of cinema.
Both the Mitchell and the Eclair were standard machines until not long ago, but here they appear as vintage objects from a distant past. So too does Polavision, the instant movie camera system developed by Polaroid, which became obsolete upon the arrival of the videocassette. In fact, it had already been discontinued by the time Fisher shot Red Boxing Gloves / Orange Kitchen Gloves.
At first glance, Red Boxing Gloves / Orange Kitchen Gloves does not appear as traditional Fisher territory. Two pairs of hands caress two pairs of gloves, which in their odd sensuality become suggestive of male and female positions. The subject is complementarity, and the pairings that it implies: between color opposites (red gloves against green background; orange gloves against blue), between left and right projections (and left and right hands), and ultimately male and female attributes, the subject of the pendant pair being one that Fisher has continued to develop and explore in his painting.
Fisher's films were made as reflections on their medium: film as a material form, as a set of technical procedures, or as an institution. He is neither a romantic nor a fetishist, but nostalgia is prominent in this exhibition. He says in the exhibition's press release, "I believed that photography and film as I found them in the 1950s would last forever." At a time when we can no longer be certain of what cinema is, Fisher's work reminds us of what it once was.
(1) Peter Kubelka, quoted in Stefan Grissemann, "Frame By Frame: Peter Kubelka," Film Comment, Sep/Oct 2012, Vol. 48 Issue 5, 75. Accessed online January 22, 2015, http://filmcomment.com/
María Palacios Cruz is a curator based in London. She is the Deputy Director of LUX and a co-founder of The Visible Press.