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Ron Haselden
In the early 70s Haselden had been making film projects with titles such as Overhead Floor Dance, Photoelectric Cell and Environmental Cycle.

The first of these, an early film project (1972) is described thus:

'2 screen. 4 mins. 16mm. A still and a cine camera record a series of configurations by a group of dancers. A central figure revolves at a higher level while drift and expand patterns are explored by the other dancers relating to the screen edge. The still camera records time exposures, while the cine records the motion. One screen cuts across to the other.'

Railway Trolley is described by Haselden as 'a continuously evolving piece that is never performed in the same way twice'. This is achieved by the use of a live figure in each performance, and by rephotographing. It used four projectors and 'the time structure is based on a drawing of a railway trolley'. The piece is significant, and typical of Haselden in achieving a synthesis between still photographs and film.

In speaking of his own work, Haselden favours the term 'film structures'. It was an expression of a wider 'structuralist' practice, and put the emphasis on the events of film-making and film-projection themselves and on other formal aspects of film. The approach was much talked about at the time, and in particular the idea that audiences were not to be passive but to take part in the presentation of film. Of particular significance was the Festival of Expanded Cinema at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in 1976.

In the ICA show Haseldens pieces were MFV 'Maureen' Fishing out of Eyemouth and Lady Dog. MFV Maureen was made in 1975, and reshown in 2002. Six screens show footage - key imagery is of a fisherman working with a net line. Since the film loops are of differing lengths, the sequence keeps changing. Also Haselden rephotographed the screens for subsequent presentations, so that the piece as a whole changes. MFV Maureen also connects us with another aspect of Haseldens work, being one of the first examples of his abiding interest in boats, rivers and the sea. The piece also marked a slight shift in his work in that the nature of the collaboration was different from that of previous works, making the piece more of a gallery show. One sees here time as an element of nature, and we are reminded that 'conceptual' art originally had both a cerebral aspect and a nature aspect. Lady Dog (1976) 'records the actions of a dog and a naked woman in my living room'. They were shot from above, and the results reduced to a sequence of stills, so that the piece is 'part static and part animated'. (Haselden in the ICA Festival of Expanded Cinema catalogue).

This was one of a series of 'expanded' cinema events. Again, it is not so much a case of pieces as of series of overlapping and interlocking events. Hasleden showed Lady Dog and Providence Trawling at the Arnolfini in 1976 and Sticks for the Dog at the ACME gallery in the same year. He also showed with other artists in a range of shows which included expanded work, including 'Inglese Arte Oggi' in Milan in 1976, and at the London Film Makers Co-op, an organisation with which many of the filmmakers working in this way were involved.

Catalogue image: Entre Nuit Et Jour by Ron Haselden
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