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Found Footage
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Found footage
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Other people's films have always provided rich material for the experimental film-maker. Not only a cheaper option than direct filming, working with found footage has enabled artists to scramble the films original messages to convey new meanings.

Found in the bins outside film labs, and on the cutting room floor, found footage, like the assemblages of artists from Marcel Duchamp to Richard Hamilton, has manipulated the waste of the commercial film industry to produce statements both humorous and political. Andrew Kötting includes medical footage to make a point about attitudes to disability in Nucleus Ambiguous, for example. By using some of the most potent documentary images of the 20th Century, as Cordelia Swann does in Desert Rose with the nuclear testing at Bikini, historical and political meanings are re-examined. In Sarah Miles' film 2001 - Family Odyssey; Ophelia's Version fragments of Hollywood films reflect the intimate dynamics and histories of the family unit.

For other filmmakers found footage opened up possibilities not just to delve into the political meanings of the film image but also to examine their abstract and ontological qualities. The repeated image of the tethered horse by the burning barn in Berlin Horse is transformed through printing processes so that it emerges as a pattern of shifting shape and colour, rather than a denoted image of a horse. In At the Academy Guy Sherwin takes the ultimate scrap from the projection room floor, the so-called academy leader which counts in the numbers at the start of a film, to create a feature of its own.

Still from At the Academy

At the Academy

Academy countdown leader, including the sound 'beep', transformed by multi-layered printing.

Still from Nucleus Ambiguous

Nucleus Ambiguous

Somewhere between normality and abnormality lies reality.

Still from Desert Rose

Desert Rose

A chilling account of the after effects suffered by the 'down-winders' from the Nevada Desert nuclear testing site.

Still from Berlin Horse

Berlin Horse

This film is largely filmed with an exploration of the film medium in certain aspects.

Still from 2001 - A Family Odyssey; Ophelia's Version

2001 - A Family Odyssey; Ophelia's Version

A poetic elliptical film exploring the hidden systemic powers of identification within a family constellation through four generations.

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