Fine Arts on Film: The Hand-Painted Work of Stan Brakhage
Keywords:film preservation, experimental cinema, Stan Brakhage, hand-painted film, originality, cinema studies
This paper will approach the topic of colour in cinema by examining the case of the hand-painted films made by experimental filmmaker Stan Brakhage. Specifically, I will present the example of some hand-coloured pre-print elements belonging to the National Cinema Museum in Turin and preserved at the Haghefilm lab in Amsterdam in 2011. I will argue that these films challenge traditional understandings of cinema by belonging simultaneously to the realm of film and to that of the fine arts and will show the consequences of this liminal position both at a practical and a theoretical level. In particular, I will explore the challenges related to the preservation of some of these films, and will relate them to broader issues of originality, medium specificity, and philological recreation of experimental cinema practices.
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