What do you think of Brakhage’s critique of the term “experimental film”? Do you agree or disagree? Why?

    What do you think of Brakhage’s critique of the term “experimental film”? Do you agree or disagree? Why?
    Please answer these question from the readings attached in two full pages!
    In MLA format include in-text citation, please !
    In his “Introduction” and “From State Meant” excerpts from Metaphors on Vision, what does Stan Brakhage mean by the word “vision”?
    What do you think of Brakhage’s critique of the term “experimental film”? Do you agree or disagree? Why?
    What do you think of Brakhage’s working style of “visual thinking” with paint in his article “Painting Film”?
    Painting Film (1996)
    Author(s): Stan Brakhage
    Source: Chicago Review, Vol. 47/48, Vol. 47, no. 4 – Vol. 48, no. 1 (Winter, 2001 – Spring,
    2002), pp. 61-64
    Published by: Chicago Review
    Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25304806
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    Erigena). This interplay is the balance/counter-balance of any brain’s
    genetic cultural individual “dance,” and this, therefore, stance-dance
    would seem to be the only fully meaningful (i.e., means-less-usage) en
    tertainment available of cognition (as distinct from re-cognition).
    Film ought aesthetically to exist flickering electric and free of pho
    tographic animation, free of the mechanical trickery of, the outright
    fakery of the illusion of movie pictures. All interferences with The
    Light (all shaped tones and formal silhouettes) ought to be an illumi
    nation of source-as-light (or at least be subservient, as symbol, say,
    representatives of Time, to Light’s life…as is, to be sure, the almost
    equal space of Black in the projection of every split second of lighted
    frame). The light, then, would be seen to move because of the light
    signifying shapes and tones in their signatory continuities (especially
    if these were tones in visual chromatic harmony, and shapes in evolu
    tionary form at one with illumination). This anyway, is the aspiration of
    artists whose Art aspires to Music, and “Art is art-as-art. And every
    thing else is everything else” (Barnett Newman, painter, sculpture).
    PAINTING FILM (1996)
    If it be an art, then it is intrinsically aesthetic, requiring aesthete?
    that is to say, it is beautiful, integrally balanced, and (as unique) of
    some individually discovered integrity: its appreciator is one who is
    capable of sensory justice and evolutionary thought, free from dogma
    and representational bias, because the art work’s this-for-that is not
    clock-like but rather evolves eccentrically within, and only within,
    the limits of being Human. Art forms and colors, or rhythms and
    tones of words, progress asymmetrically or eventually settle into some
    complexity of beseeming haphazard composure. The art work defines
    a paradigm of the experienced chaos of everyday life while being in
    itself a construct quite distinct from it.
    The salad is on the table, every ruffled edge of lettuce crisp with
    the glitter of its own being-at-one with water and/or overlay of oil.
    STAN BRAKHAGE I 61
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    Musically, such crispness can translate pizzicatto, or into some slow
    uncoil of overall (say oboe) curl of tone, some tone of green punctu
    ated by drum, and so on, or it can just be distorted by dream?the
    limp-lettuce nightmare, crack and timbre reverberation in phosphor
    glint of cathected leafage, soforth.
    Were I to paint the plein-aire abstraction of this (as I do) onto a
    strip of film, my whim would be to absorb what could be seen of
    such lettuce, its surrounds of table and all, the very room, and then to
    allow into my consideration the movements of such absorption?
    the shifts of eye in contemplation, the electrical discharges of synap
    tic thought, the “translations,” as it were, from optic imprint to memo
    rabilia.
    For color (“magic markers,” dyes, india inks) I choose greens,
    yes, but vein them with yellows and ruffled shadow-black, applying
    isopropyl alcohol on a twisted pointed Kleenex to thin dye lines,
    smudge the tones or (with alcohol flicked from a thumbed tooth
    brush) create circles to dab into partial-circle-curves or (with weak
    ened, spit-diluted alcohol) do manage filigrees midst mixes of con
    glomerate color. Sometimes varieties of tone are marked directly upon
    the transparent “palette” (or clipboard which holds the film-strip),
    so that I can then make toned puddles of alcohol to dip the film into,
    feathering the shapes with quick twists of the wrist, pressing the film
    so that the dyes collect as edges to half-dried shapes, and so on. More
    often than not the alcohol is used to erase an entire frame or collec
    tion of frames which have, so it seems, come to naught.
    There is very little of “lettuce” left after all this, but when success
    ful, the truths of moving visual thinking are made manifest along a
    strip of film.
    As to the “table,” strips of adhesive tape provide varieties of straight
    lines, after applied dyes, in mimic of eye’s slippage?brevities of “cub
    ism,” if you will, in Time…continuities of cubistic envisionment when
    flashed (twenty-four frames a second) through the projector and upon
    the motion-picture screen. Very little of geometry survives “transla
    tion” into organic thought, so it seems to me. The meat of the mind
    (at least my mind) puts curve to linearity, blurs hard-edge percep
    tion; but the thought of (for example) “the shortest distance between
    two points” prevails in a mix of cellular irregularities sufficient to
    62 I CHICAGO REVIEW
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    necessitate its occasional representation.
    The table is in the range of nomenclature “yellow brown”; but
    the eye’s retention of yellow is blue, and the after-image of brown is
    often something I call “red-black”?a very muted red, to be sure…more
    in the range of purple, say?actually unnameable. The shifts of tone,
    as the mind absorbs, is understandably variable along a strip of film,
    but almost always tending to recycle its orders, like the pitches of a
    tune, but a tune undergoing melodic variations. These variations are
    subject to interruptions by absorption of all other tones (and shape
    shifts) of the surrounding room (for shape does surely affect recep
    tion of tone…and tone of tone in color-chordal variance)
    The plate upon which the salad sits (oval-shaped, as it happens)
    presents curves which tighten in relation to each other as if pulled
    string-to-bow, becoming variances of interruptive “horizontals,” “ver
    ticals,” “diagonals” (as we name them?mimicking the language of
    painting and still photography) in the field of compositional logic
    for film. Semi-dried “magic markers” can effect a line quite similar
    (on this small scale) to brush-stroke; but these I tend to smudge with
    alcohol twist of Kleenex until they more nearly approximate some
    sense of optic flickering of such. As the plate is “white,” and the film
    strip transparent film-leader, I delicately scratch at the lines of the
    “stroke,” so to speak.
    The truth of the “plate” is that it affects visual absorption of the
    lettuce very much like a break in the sight-lines, distraction from
    forms, rhythmically castanet-like, because otherwise its paradigm on
    film, its variable oval, would act as container?a word appropriate to
    its service vis-?-vis lettuce (appropriate surely in language and per
    haps to description of snapshot) but absolute non-sense in respect to
    moving visual thought process. Such containment would preclude
    the peripherally perceived effects of the room, the in-pouring light of
    the world beyond, the process of memory and expectation; and thus
    would obliterate Time.
    I haven’t really written about the paradigmatic play of memory
    in this process of painting a film…nor do I intend to now; but suffice
    it that “lettuce” perceived as a word and lettuce seen across any (how
    ever limited) “space of time,” like we say, constitute two entirely dif
    ferent processes of thinking.
    STAN BRAKHAGE I 63
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    Let me end on three “Tender Buttons” by Gertrude Stein:
    MORE
    An elegant use of foliage and grace and a little piece of white cloth
    and oil.
    Wondering so winningly in several kinds of oceans is the reason
    that makes red so regular and enthusiastic. The reason that there is
    more snips are the same shining very colored rid of no round color.
    A NEW CUP AND SAUCER
    Enthusiastically hurting a clouded yellow bud and saucer, enthusi
    astically so is the bite in the ribbon
    OBJECTS
    Within, within the cut and slender joint alone, with sudden equals
    and no more than three, two in the center make two one side.
    If the elbow is long and it is filled so then the best example is all
    together.
    The kind of show is made by squeezing.
    THE LOST FILMS (1996)
    The Lost Films is a series of nine untitled films, from the late 1980s
    through to 1995, which are photographed and/or painted, sometimes
    painted-over photography?and are “lost” in the sense that, across
    the whole period of time, I could not manage nor imagine any way to
    pay for printing them. Finally a C.R.C.W. University of Colorado sab
    batical grant allowed me to take them out of “the lost drawer” in my
    office, string them together chronologically, and send them on to
    Western Cine labs.
    64 I CHICAGO REVIEW
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