tonight i went to An Evening with William E. Jones, which was part of the ongoing Modern Mondays series at MOMA. jones screened about 7 short film/video/movie pieces (including the 3 pieces above).

one of the most interesting works from this evening was Discrepancy (an 8 screen video projection) which breaks down the narrative of Isidore Isou‘s radical Lettriste film, venom and eternity, from 1951. jones extracts segments from the film’s original anti-cinema manifesto (translated into english and spoken by a default computer voice) and pairs it with 8 simultaneously projected pieces of found/appropriated footage.

screen captures from venom and eternity, watch the entirety of the film here.

isou’s film rationalizes a number of reasons why cinema must be destroyed in order for film to progress to another level as an artform. the tenets of his manifesto (distressing/destroying the film by cutting/painting upon/scratching, non-synched sound and image, non-traditional narrative, the ability to create a film for free, etc…) acted as a springboard for the work of many experimental filmmakers who emerged in the late 50’s/early 60’s but these filmmakers did not carry-out all of Isou’s ideas. i think Isou would have been quite pleased if he had lived to see Discrepancy.

Mr. Jones will also be speaking and premiering another short film at the Nachleben show at the goethe-institut tomorrow evening at 7, details here.

and more on the art of William E. Jones here.

*the section of the film that the still on the right was from was one of the most uncomfortable things i have ever had to sit through in a theater (the shot consisted of a dirty old pornographer dude rubbing his finger around a young man’s mouth in a very sexual manner as part of a porn screen test), i kind of want to do a remake of this part of jones’ found footage, young communists send me your cvs!


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