Early Abstractions

Early Abstractions

color, sound, 23 min
Early Abstractions is comprised of six films that vary in length from 2 to 5 1/2 minutes. The works were produced over a 7 year period from 1946 to 1952. As Jonas Mekas has said, "You can watch them ...
Rental format: 16mm $90.00

Stills

About

Early Abstractions is comprised of six films that vary in length from 2 to 5 1/2 minutes. The works were produced over a 7 year period from 1946 to 1952. As Jonas Mekas has said, "You can watch them for pure color enjoyment; you can watch them for motion- Harry Smith's films never stop moving; or you can watch them for hidden symbolic meanings, alchemic signs. There are more levels in Harry Smith's work than in any other film animator I know." Inspired by Native American cultures, jazz, the Kabbala, and surrealism, Smith assembled his own cinematic universe of shape, color, light and time. Early Abstractions reveals the whimsical, mystical side of experimental animation. To create No: 2 Message From the Sun, a film that Smith said "takes places either inside the sun or in Zurich, Switzerland," the artist applied round, removable stickers to the filmstock, painted the film, and then coated the surface with Vaseline. When the stickers were removed, the circles remained in outline and another layer of paint was applied. Thus as the film is projected, the circle' rhythmic patterns seem to travel and grow in intensity through the layering and merging of colors.

Films

  • Other films by this artist in our catalogue

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    Heaven & Earth Magic
    Animation
    Experimental

    Heaven & Earth Magic
    Harry Smith

    color and b/w, sound, 66 min
    Rental format: 16mm
    • Psychology / Mental Health
    • Spiritual / Mystical
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    Late Superimpositions
    Experimental

    Late Superimpositions
    Harry Smith

    color, sound, 31 min
    Rental format: 16mm
    • Structural
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    Mirror Animations
    Animation
    Experimental

    Mirror Animations
    Harry Smith

    color, sound, 11 min
    Rental format: 16mm
    • Spiritual / Mystical