Alphaville Videoteca

INDEX #004: Valie Export - 3 Experimental Short Films (1970-1984)

Austria. Experimental. 36 minutos
Título Original: INDEX #004: Valie Export - 3 Experimental Short Films
Director: Valie Export
Intérpretes:
Formato: DVD  Calidad: DVD
Idioma: Sin diálogos   Subtítulos: No necesita

DVD CONTENTS:

MANN & FRAU & ANIMAL (Man & Woman & Animal) 1970-73, 9 min
Instead of the holy trinity: father, son, holy spirit, instead of the profane trinity: mother, family, state, instead of the social trinity: father, mother, children the film treats the real trilogy in 3 sections. What unites man and woman (not uniquely for sure, but what is being concealed) is the history of nature. (V.E.)

The earlier films of Valie Export, one feels, were motivated by the author´s desire and needs to investigate her own subjectivity, with the audience as a necessary part of the transference and polemic. "Man & Woman & Animal" shows a woman finding pleasure in herself, the whole film a kind of assertion and affirmation of female sexuality and its independence from male values and pleasures. Thinking about my "quite erotic" tag of that film I realize that as a viewer I am experiencing a sexuality like that of childhood - one motivated by curiosity, a prosaic pleasure in looking, but free from fantasy. It is quite unlike the experience of ordinary pornography which is invested with the erotic almost exclusively through its symbolization of power. (Joanna Kiernan)

....REMOTE.....REMOTE..... 1973, 10 min
Human behaviour in contrast to machines (animals) is influenced by events in the past, as far back as these experiences may lie. Therefore there exists a psychic paratime parallel to the objective time, where the prayers of anguish and guilt, the inability to win, deformations which rip open the skin, becoming aware of oneself, have their constant effects. I demonstrate something which represents past and present. (V.E.)

....Remote....Remote.... was one of the films categorized by a considerable number of women as typifying despicable excesses and extreme violence. People frequently reacted to the film with horror, incomprehension and scorn. In showing emotion, gentleness and sensitivity as female qualities, there was no place for aggression - cutting and violently opening were equated with male behaviour; having to pentrate in order to possess.

When Valie Export shaves and trims herself, the sight of her provokes fantasies, revolving around acts done to the body. Yet there is nothing dreadful about a woman trimming her body, especially in the places where she enhances the glamour imposed on her body by the civilizing influences of the world around her. And the fact that you have to suffer to achieve beauty has always brought a knowing smile to a woman's lips.

The way in which Valie Export grooms herself however, involves unconventional touching and violation which goes beyond the familiar sight of a woman "harmlessly" doing herself up. This triggered, and continues to trigger, huge defensive reactions among many women. Such a reaction represents the easiest way of emphatically rejecting something that has got right under the skin. No-one is allowed to encroach into the recesses of our private existence, in which the damage suffered and our own self-mutilation remains safeguarded behind a front of normality. (Renate Lippert)

SYNTAGMA 1984, 17 min
My work in the area of short film focuses on working out what is essential to a film, to define it as a self-sufficient and closed artistic system; so that I can make use of the single operators, such as image and sound and expand on their creative possibilities of association. The actual significant operators such as film strip, framing, image content, image construction, montage, movement of the camera, visual effects, the interaction of the visual with the audio, etc., are combined with the cultural codes to create a syntactic construction, out of which a film is born. Such thoughts also explain certain structures of my feature films. The film sequences themselves are real units, which are semantically related to one another. (V.E.)