This survey of exemplary structural and electronic films made between 1959 and 1996 packs three decades of formal experimentation into a vigorous hour, beginning with seminal works by Peter Kubelka and Tony Conrad that offer up distinctive approaches to the flicker film. Cross-media manipulation and celluloid-based formalism alternate throughout the lineup, suggesting the two approaches as parallel rather than opposing strands in the medium’s evolution during decades that saw a shift to video and digital in visual culture at large. Early titles in the program by Stan VanDerBeek, Aldo Tambellini, and Stuart Sherman tap into the resonance of the televised image, while works by Jud Yalkut, Nam June Paik, and Doris Chase point to the use of video, music, and dance to manipulate the filmic frame. It is in the closing films, from the 1990s, where the enduring structural concerns of 16mm filmmaking return through Fred Worden’s homage to Len Lye and Arthur and Corinne Cantrill’s resplendent interior tableau shot on Super 8mm, a late example of their lifelong experimentation with optical printing and three-color separation. Program approx. 65 min
Electronic Moon No. 2. 1966–72/1992. USA. Directed by Jud Yalkut, Nam June Paik. Music by Claude Debussy. Print courtesy Anthology Film Archives. Preserved by Anthology Film Archives with support from the National Film Preservation Foundation. 16mm. 5 min.
Arnulf Rainer. 1960. Austria. Directed by Peter Kubelka. 16mm. 6:30 min.
Straight and Narrow. 1970. USA. Directed by Tony Conrad, Beverly Conrad. Print courtesy Anthology Film Archives. Preserved by Anthology Film Archives with support from the National Film Preservation Foundation. 16mm. 10 min.
Science Friction. 1959. USA. Directed by Stan VanDerBeek. 16mm. 10 min.
Black TV. 1968. USA. Directed by Aldo Tambellini. 16mm. 10 min.
Baseball/TV. 1973. USA. Directed by Stuart Sherman. Preserved by The Museum of Modern Art and Anthology Film Archives with support from the National Film Preservation Foundation. 16mm. 3 min.
Dance Frame. 1978. USA. Directed by Doris Chase. Score by Joan La Barbara. Choreography by Sara Rudner. Courtesy Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research. 16mm transferred to video. 7 min.
Boulevard. 1989. USA. Directed by Fred Worden. 16mm. 9 min.
Articulated Image. 1996. Australia. Directed by Arthur Cantrill, Corinne Cantrill. 16mm. 3:30 min.