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Film Culture, No. 39, 1965, pp. 118-119.
Ron Rice in UbuWeb Film
Film Culture in UbuWeb Papers
Presented in partnership with Anthology Film Archives
The Dazendada Film Group plans to undertake the construction of a film processing machine so full of holes that it will pass the most abstract film material without any complications. The Group hopes that the President will be present at the launching of the Machine so as to break a bottle of champagne over her coils.
The Dazendada group also intends to purchase a warehouse full of surplus film, which will be used by the members of same.
There will be a Grand meeting of the Group soon where everyone will gather together around a new type film stock developed for shooting, afterwards everyone will go on a Universal field Trip in order to observe the universe. Reports of these experiences will thereupon be fed into the new processing machine, which it is said to be able to transform the old style black and white shooting stock into more advanced color material which allows one to climb higher, achieve more resolution of image, gain the color, and return after a few days shooting with less anxiety than previously possible.
After this session proposals will be sought which will lead to the formulation of a plan which will enable the very concept of Dazendada to steep into the heart of the current commercial organizations.
Interested People are invited to attend our film shows every monday night at nine in the side room of the Metro cafe, Second Avenue, New York City.
To be part of the standard equipment in the motion picture theatre of the future.
This information will appear on the screen before the film begins:
"A still photograph may be obtained from any instant in the film you are about to see. There is a button located in the arm rest of your seat. If this button is pressed an automatic camera located in the balcony will fire. Any photographs which you take can be obtained from the collectors window in the lobby by presenting the number of your seat."
The pragmatism of this idea lies in the fact that people desire a greater personal contact with Culture. There is a necessity for the means (equipment) which will enable people to select for themselves any particular instant of a movie.
The great value in such a system is:
"The progression of a civilization is dependent upon the individual Man being able to isolate and study any particular instant in his existence."
THE ART FORM
Anything can become an Art form just so long as you get enough writers to write things about "IT."
SLOGANS FOR YOUNG FILM-MAKERS & OBSERVATIONS
One good bank robbery is worth a thousand letters.
The only difference between shooting a film on 35mm rather than I6mm is the amount of financial credit one can Swing.
For good comedy use the Grass from the west coast of Mexico. For serious Drama use the Grass from the East Side.
The only thing that saves me from complete disaster is carbon paper.
The Fools circle of ambitious Film-makers: Printing.... Sending letters.... Screenings Asking.... Explaining Rejection Frustration.... Sickness Unhappiness.... Death
ODE TO THE EYEAbout that time it was decided by the Gods that reality was more important than creation. The reality of anything moves the spirit more than artIficial attempts to create motion where there is static.
A drunkard struggling in the alley to remove the cap from the wine bottle strikes the emotions with more force and meaning then any logical sequence of staged events that don't have the fibre of life.
Any scene, no matter what, can evoke more of man to believe and feel then a parallelism which contains logic without reality. It is better to film anything that is living and real than to film ideas of what should, or might be real.
MUSIC When Ornett Coleman started to make new sounds with his horn he was beaten over the head with his horn. The audience just could not accept these new sounds. Today Coleman is listened to. He will go down in the history of music.
PAINTING The same non-acceptance was the case with the painters of this era. The Jackson Pollacks were at first rejected. It took a while and soon rhe people open to new Art realized these painters were communicating something New to their fellow Man. Modern Art is now becoming history. What was laughed at 20 years ago is now being looked at.
LITERATURE Again the situation of the Artist not being recognized. Ginsberg, Burroughs creating a new form. Rejected at first. Now it is impossible for those who do not wish to attempt to comprehend the message to turn back the clock. The works of the New writers are there and will take their place in the stream of Mankind's Culture.
THE CINEMA Still in the dark ages. Again the same story. Man afraid of the Dark, the New, the Different. Always clinging to his old hats. The New American Cinema is just the first crack in the ice. What is going to be made and seen in the next ten years would cause your grandfather to leap from the grave. And the beautiful part about it all is that you can, my dear critics, scream protest to the skies. You're too late. The Musicians, Painters, Writers, Poets and Film-Makers all fly in the same sky, and know Exactly where It's "AT."
LETTER TO THE VILLAGE VOICE
(Concerning an experiment with off-Broadway actors)
One night last week I went into the Charles theatre where a play was in performance. I went directly to the stage, sat down on a chair and proceeded to remove my shoes and socks. An actor took my shoes down the aisle forcing me to leave the stage.
Why must one leave the stage when the actors are trying to be improvisational? It's a contradiction of principles. The director plants people in the audience to make 'spontaneous' comments which the actors on stage are supposed to respond to, surprised. The audience knows it's prearranged. What the hell could be worse than self-conscious spontaneity?
It's all tied up with ambition. The actors spend much time and energy on their work. They must be admired for this concrete need to climb to the top of an absurd civilization. But where the hell is sublimity, where are the messages that takes the spectator out of the theatre to another planet?
Art and drugs are the same thing. The spectator at the films, in the theatre, listening to the concert wishes to soar, to be taken by the magic of sounds and images to impossible places. Locations that he cannot reach on the subway. You all know this, why then do you, my dear serious actors, try to fight the destruction inherent in the creation. Creation is a destructive process, and vice-versa.
All actors should forget that they are actors.
All film-makers should forget that they're film-makers.
Everyone can reach the heights of creation if they understand that Art has no definition. It encompasses all. Art is everywhere in the sewers in the buildings in the air like a bird.
Why bother to analyze anything. See where analysis has brought the human race, the world is on the brink of destruction and you actors, take yourselves seriously, isn't it absurd?
Mr. Da Zen Dada
P.S. In New York there is a great self-consciousness attitude in the air. Zen Dada is not at home here. But the absolute wonder of it all is that here in N. Y. there is a great void to be Da Zen Dada in.
Those that read the rhythm of these words must understand.
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