Hollis Frampton, USA 1971, 36’
Excerpt taken from the tate modern website.
"American artist and writer Hollis Frampton's film overturned the conventional narrative roles of words and images. In his account of an artist’s transformation from photographer to filmmaker, Frampton burns photographs that he has taken and selected from his past, along with one found photograph. A calm voice-over tells a story about each image, but it’s about the next image that the audience will see, not the one shown. Confounding comprehension still further, the narration begins and ends during the photograph’s combustion so that smoke and ashes busy your eye while you are trying to make sense of the image and the narration, trying to remember the story to fit the next image, trying to remember the image to fit the story you are hearing."
"In (nostalgia), Frampton is clearly working with the experience of cinematic temporality. The major structural strategy is a disjunction between sound and image. We see a series of still photographs, most of them taken by Frampton, slowly burning one at a time on a hotplate. On the soundtrack, we hear Frampton's comments and reminiscences about the photographs. As we watch each photograph burn, we hear the reminiscence pertaining to the following photograph. The sound and image are on two different time schedules. At any moment, we are listening to a commentary about a photograph that we shall be seeing in the future and looking at a photograph that we have just heard about. We are pulled between anticipation and memory. The nature of the commentary reinforces the complexity; it arouses our sense of anticipation by referring to the future; it also reminisces about the past, about the time and conditions under which the photographs were made. The double time sense results in a complex, rich experience." - Bill Simon
"In (nostalgia) the time it takes for a photograph to burn (and thus confirm its two-dimensionality) becomes the clock within the film, while Frampton plays the critic, asynchronously glossing, explicating, narrating, mythologizing his earlier art, and his earlier life, as he commits them both to the fire of a labyrinthine structure; for Borges too was one of his earlier masters, and he grins behind the facades of logic, mathematics, and physical demonstration which are the formal metaphors for most of Frampton's films." - P. Adams Sitney
"(nostalgia) is mostly about words and the kind of relationship words can have to images. I began probably as a kind of non-poet, as a kid, and my first interest in images probably had something to do with what clouds of words could rise out of them... I think there is kind of a shift between what is now memory and what was once conjecture and prophecy and so forth." - Hollis Frampton
"(nostalgia) is a film to look at and think about, not a film that seizes your mind and forces its sensations on you. It liberates the imagination rather than entrapping it. It raises questions about the nature of film, the tension between fact and illusion, between now and then. It advances our understanding of film magic, and for this I am grateful." - Standish Lawder
"(nostalgia), beginning as an ironic look upon a personal past, creates its own filmic time, a past and future generated by the expectations elicited by its basic disjunctive strategy." - Annette Michelson