Jim Bizzocchi, Simon Fraser University, Curator; Justine Bizzocchi, Independent Artist, Producer
metaphorically the page is a window
bpNichol’s dream presages the digital condition. The fluidity of expression and aesthetic between recognized media forms has always existed, the digital simply makes it easier. The liminal poetics of the “between” is a rich ground for artists working across media boundaries – the space that Dick Higgins called “intermedia.”
In a pre-digital era, bpNichol celebrated the concept of art that crossed boundaries – the page that could be a window. However, he also lamented:
i try writing on the glass &
the ink won’t hold
With the digital, the ink holds. All media use the same technical substrate – zeroes and ones. This new ink writes on page and glass with equal facility. The contemporary ground between forms of mediated practice is now as firm as the ground at the center of any given form. All it needs is exploration, and the ELO16 Screening event is a celebration of exploration between media forms, in particular those works that merge the poetics of the page with the poetics of the screen.
Collectively, these works instantiate a series of dialectics of creative expression: the word and the image, the image and the sound, the mediated and the gestural, the body and the senses. Ormstaad’s MOOON works at the foundational level of these dynamics – giving us a whimsical audio-visual poem that mixes simple yet evocative images of water and the moon with direct representations of letter and text. Dulic’s works use layers of image and sound to invoke corresponding layers of language, dream, and story. Her films combine the expressivity of cinema, visual art, motion graphics, calligraphy, voice and text. DiPaola uses gesture and word as his foundation – transforming a cinematic dance through a series of painterly visual transformations that flow from the representative to the abstract and back again. Finally, Justin Stephenson gives us a tour-de-force view into the art of Canadian poet, writer, and performer bpNichol. bpNichol ‘s seminal body of work in text, sound, and performance was a classic expression of intermediated form during the 1970’s. Stephenson’s film presents bpNichol ‘s artistry across its various manifestations, and at the same time faithfully extends bp’s genius through a series of reflective lenses and interpretations.
The National Film Board of Canada relied on Shakespeare to summarize the life’s work of Canada’s greatest filmmaker, Norman MacLaren: “The Eye Hears, The Ear Sees”. The films of the ELO Screening work in a similar creative direction – the synaesthetic expression of mediated form at the digital intersection of word, image, and sound.
- Ottar Ormstad, Independent Artist, “mooon” [See Artist Site]
- Justin Stephenson, Independent Artist, “The Complete Works” [See Artist Site]
- Aleksandra Dulic & Kenneth Newby, Independent Artists, “The Winged Horses” & “From a Dream” [See Artist Site]
- Steve DiPaola, Simon Fraser U, “Texture & Flow” [See Artist Site]