OCTOBER 6
Close-Up Film Centre, London

        (tickets)
                closeupfilmcentre.com












































               (previous event)
Programme 1 (1972–76)
With JOHN SMITH and STANLEY SCHTINTER live in conversation

Triangles (1972, 3m. SD video from 16mm)
Smith’s first 16mm film comprises abstract animation punctuated by found footage, cut to music by The Velvet Underground.

Someone Moving (1972, 5m. SD video from 16mm)
Choreographed actions of a moving figure, broken down into still frames and reanimated in superimposed layers. Soundtrack by Peter Cusack.

The Hut (1973, 5m. SD video from 16mm)
An experiment into visual rhythms that animates still photographs of a decaying building.

Words (1973, 7m. 16mm [magnetic sound]) with Lis Rhodes
An exploration of arbitrary meaning involving random combinations of words.

Out the Back (1974, 5m. HD video from Super 8mm [silent])
An improvisation around the view from an urban window, the first of Smith’s films to be edited in camera.

William and the Cows (1974, 6m. Super 8mm re-filmed on 16mm [silent])
Slowed down glimpses of life on the island of Sark.
“One of the most surreal films I have ever seen.”
    - Malcolm Le Grice

Faces (1974, 6m. HD video from 16mm [silent])
A study of movement and stasis involving the animation of still photographs.

Associations (1975, 7m. HD video from 16mm)
Images from magazines and colour supplements accompany a spoken text taken from Word Associations and Linguistic Theory by Herbert H Clark. Playing upon ambiguities inherent in the English language, Associations sets language against itself. Image and word work together/against each other to destroy/create meaning.

Leading Light (1975, 11m. HD video from 16mm)
“Leading Light uses the camera-eye to reveal the irregular beauty of a familiar space. When we inhabit a room we are only unevenly aware of the space held in it and the possible forms of vision which reside there. The camera-eye documents and returns our apprehension. Vertov imagined a ‘single room’ made up of a montage of many different rooms. Smith reverses this aspect of ‘creative geography’ by showing how many rooms the camera can create from just one.”
    - 
A L Rees

The Girl Chewing Gum (1976, 12m. HD video from 16mm)
A commanding voice over appears to direct the action in a busy London street. As the instructions become more absurd and fantasised, we realise that the supposed director (not the shot) is fictional; he only describes - not prescribes - the events that take place before him.
"Smith takes the piss out of mainstream auteurist ego, but provides proof of the underground ethos: Even with meagre mechanical means, the artist can command the universe."
    - Ed Halter

TRT 66 mins

Mark





In celebration of John Smith’s 50 years of filmmaking, purge.xxx presents the most extensive survey of his work to date: screening 50 films by Smith, organised into 10 weekly programmes, every Thursday from October to December at 8pm, at Close-Up Film Centre and Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), London.

Smith’s INTROSPECTIVE launches with a special, one-off music-focussed programme at the ICA (Saturday 1 October at 6:30pm) marking the vinyl release of BLIGHT, the soundtrack from Smith’s film with music by Jocelyn Pook. Smith and Pook will be present and in conversation, with rarely seen films including commissions for Charles Hayward and Echo & the Bunnymen screening on the night.

The weekly programmes are arranged chronologically, combining rarely screened works with well-known favourites.

For tickets please book events individually*, using the links listed along with the events.




JOHN SMITH: INTROSPECTIVE (1972–2022) is organised by Stanley Schtinter. For more information and to book tickets for events visit closeupfilmcentre.com and ica.art. For more information and to buy the Blight soundtrack visit purge.xxx. For Smith’s work: johnsmithfilms.com. To order a copy of the printed programme, *enquire about season passes, or for anything else: info (at) purge (dot) xxx




Mark