• Thursday, 1 April, 2021 Sunday, 25 April, 2021  

Screening

Showroom 5

  • free admission with exhibition ticket
     

Gradient

Philippe Decrauzat

Anonyme, \

In Gradient (2021), the artist Philippe Decrauzat explores the characteristics of light in film, questioning the mechanisms of perception through the prism of their technological medium.

 

Films by Philippe Decrauzat (1974-) are riddled with references to the history of modernism and theories of perception, rewritten by the artist into a cinematic paradigm. His work sketches the contours of the origin of moving images and projectors. Following the traditional experimental methodologies used at the end of the 19th century, the artist questions the mechanisms of perception through the prism of their technological medium. He turns this medium and its intrinsic properties into the subject of his experimentations. Decrauzat’s works incorporate the formal and conceptual vocabulary of structural film and even appear to use the effects and meanings of this genre from time to time. The film Gradient (2021) was created especially for this exhibition at Kanal and is an appropriation of a classic in cinematic history: L’Aurore (1927) by German film maker Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau. The artist fully alters the sequencing of the original work, however, by re-editing it based on an algorithm. The result is structured on the progressive gradation of whites, from darkest to lightest. When projected, the new arrangement shows the natural movement of light constructed as a narrative principle in the original film. Each image is replaced by a sequence based on brightness, independent of its narrative value. Although impossible to separate from analogical reproductive techniques, light is here interpreted through a digital prism, as part of a continuous electrical flow freed from spatio-temporal constraints. According to media theorist Friedrich Kittler, the invention of the microprocessor marks the last act of writing and the end of history. Confronted with variations in intensity, the viewer is invited to experience a continuous transition through all states and divisions of a light spectrum.