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The L: You often include lists in your work...
DC: Oh, true. I include the time codes a lot. There are a lot of numbers in my work. And those usually refer to where I'm freezing the frame. Because sometimes in the movie you might see one wall at, say, five minutes into the film but then you don't see the next wall, even the adjoining wall, until an hour into the movie. And movies are made of a lot of different shots. And, at least in classic Hollywood cinema, all those shots are pieced together to give an impression of a seamless whole. Of course, avant-garde and experimental film exploits those ruptures, but in classic Hollywood film we're not suppose to perceive the seams. But movies of course are very fractured.
And I guess I to do that in my work, too, piece things together so that it looks like one seamless whole, one big room. But if you look at it closely enough—maybe not even so closely!—there are a lot of fractures in my reconstruction of the work.
The L: So, how do you compare your relationship to classic Hollywood cinema with experimental film's, which you said was exploiting the ruptures? Are you then, as well?
DC: I guess I'm acknowledging the ruptures, or the fractures. I'm trying to put it back together to make a whole, almost mending it. Taking this thing that's been all broken apart and kind of darning it back together again.
The L: But where you can actually see the seams? Quilted?
DC: I don't think that I ever point to a break. But I don't think viewers can really avoid sensing the breaks.
The L: Before we get back into classical cinema, I noticed your drawings from Last Year at Marienbad. Is that something you're working or you've worked with often? How does your interest in that film relate to some of the things that you're talking about?
DC: You know, I remember seeing that film in college and I didn't really get it. I felt like nothing really happened, or I didn't understand what was happening. And then I revisited it when I was older and I just loved it. Maybe all of those things that I found difficult about it started to become what I really loved about it. It didn't have a narrative that I could define, and I loved the slowness about it. I liked the way the camera moved through those spaces. And all those characters who seemed real but also seemed masked. And they're not named, either, in that film, are they? I think it's just Man and Woman.
The Biennialist reaches surprising heights in new works at The Boiler in Williamsburg.
Apr 15, 2010