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Peter Kubelka

Related: Structural film - USA

Thomas Korchil on Peter Kubelka

Beginning in 1956, when Kubelka started to work on Adebar, he developed what he called ´the metric filmª. ´Metricª, derived from the Latin word ´metrumª, means that every part of the film is precisely measured and set into relation to the film as a whole, and that every part of the film communicates with all the other parts. In Adebar, the single units, out of which the film is composed, are 13, 26 and 52 frames long; they follow complex rules which determine their appearance and their consecution within the film. After finishing Adebar in 1957, Kubelka increased speed and complexity enormously by reducing the size of the units to individual frames; Schwechater, made from 1957 to 1958, is the very first film which was entirely constructed on the principle that cinematic articulation takes place not between shots (as Eisenstein had proclamed) but between single frames. With Arnulf Rainer (1960), Kubelka took his metric theory even further, thus reducing cinema to its elementary forms; the film is exclusively constructed out of black and white frames, silence and white noise. The huge impact of Kubelkas metric films on the development of cinema cannot be overestimated, especially in relation to what was later called ´the structural filmª. --http://www.kortfilmfestivalen.no/arkiv/english/articles/99_PeterKub.html [Aug 2004]

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