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Cinema (Graham, Dan), 1981

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context nor with the cultural context of the cinema, is precisely suitable as a form and mediation device to create such a historical perspective.

This also raises the question of where and how a historical perspective would have to start if it does not want to begin one-sidedly from the art context or the cinema context. Most of the great art movements in the first half of the 20th century—starting with Cubism and Futurism and moving on to pure abstraction and Surrealism—went hand in hand with cinematic experiments, but this usually involved just applying principles to film that had been developed previously in the field of painting. They therefore seem to be at home in the context of art, even if art was scarcely prepared in the first half of the century to allow film to make an impact as an expressive artistic medium in its own right. But the Situationismus [3] movement presented a situation of a different kind after the Second World War. Instead of withdrawing into the context of art or shifting on to the territory of commercial cinema, strategies were developed here for reflecting on cinema or the experience of cinema as a social reality and to open it up on its own terms.


Practice of this kind is not rooted in the art context, even though it is undoubtedly reminiscent of avant-garde strategies, nor in the context of the cinema, even though it is reflecting on this very context (for this see Thomas Y. Levin's contribution «TITLE»). Hence situationist practice can serve as a key point that makes it possible to sharpen the outline of preceding and subsequent artistic developments relating to the experience and potential of cinema: this practice raises the question of the relationship between a potential and its social reality. And also, a lasting interest in architecture and the urban landscape is linked in it with an interest in cinematic experiences. The urban ambience is the location for diversion, for digression and dissipation, and the cinema is able to create the necessary focus for this experience. In his 1981 »Cinema-Modell«, Dan Graham took the central insight-guiding metaphor of meta-psychological cinema theory that developed in the 70s—the film screen as a «mirror»—literally and thus conceived a situation in which urban landscape and film experience enter into an osmotic relationship (for this see Gregor Stemmrich's essay «TITLE»). This

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