Windmill Three – preview

Year : 1974

Running Time : 10m colour 16mm

Sound : Silent

“The varying speeds of the blades presents the spectator with varying perceptual data which require different approaches to the image.When moving slowly, they [heighten] the sense of deep space. At moderate speed, they act as an extra shutter, which fragments “normal” motion, emphasizing movement within the deeper plane, and critiquing the notion of “normality” in cinematic motion. When moving quite fast, the blades act as abstract images superimposed on the landscape image and flattening the two planes into one. And when the blades are stopped (or almost so) a completely new space is created…” by Deke Dusinberre, Afterimage, 1976

The camera films a park landscape through the flat mirror blades of a small windmill. The film was shot in one continuous 400 foot take. The camera looks through the blades of the windmill, recording either what is behind or in front of the windmill blades. A rhythm determined by the speed and direction of the wind.

This film is one of a series of films (Wind Vane, Anemometer, Tree, Park, Estuary etc.) which uses an element present within the frame as a feedback device to control an aspect of the recording process. In this case it is the wind moving the leaves on the trees within the frame which also causes the windmill to rotate like a secondary shutter in front of the camera. This rotation of the mirrored windmill blades causes the image on the screen to alternate between the space in front of the camera, seen intermittently through the blades, and the space behind the camera, reflected in the blades. When the windmill reaches a particular speed, a third space is also created as the deep space of the picture plane fragments and becomes a two-dimensional abstract surface of colour and light.

The duration of this film was limited by the length of a roll of unexposed film stock. The shape of the film, however, was entirely dependent on the strength and direction of the wind.

Distributor : Placeholder Name