Film editor Walter Murch, who edited many of Francis Ford Copolla’s films, developed a theory about edits while working on The Conversation (1974) He noticed that in many cases, the best place to make a cut was when he blinked. Subsequently, Murch wrote about the human blink as a sort of mental punctuation mark: a signifier of a viewer’s comfort with visual material and therefore, a good place to separate two ideas with a cut.
This sculpture is a physical test of Murch’s principle. I watched The Conversation while wearing a custom device that recorded the pattern of my blinks during the film. Using this information, I created a display in which the left mallet taps out the paattern of my blinks, while the right mallet taps out the pattern of Murch’s edits. When the two match up, the cymbal chimes for success.
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