Produced for ARTS 319: Junior Seminar, Fall 2011.
This video attempts to replicate the sense of vulnerability and humor that can be found in George Kuchar's video series, "The Weather Diaries".
BACKGROUND INFO ON THE WEATHER DIARIES:
"In the mid-1980s, Kuchar acquired an 8-mm camcorder and began producing an extraordinary series of video diaries, chronicling a singular, ongoing personal history.
Exhibiting the rawness of video verite and the theatricality of fiction, his self-narrated tapes record close-up observations of the personal routines and social interactions of Kuchar's daily life. Infused with humor and melancholy, these documents of the banal and intimate details of the everyday are punctuated with Kuchar's conversations, wry monologues, introspective musings and muttered asides.
Significantly, these low-budget, low-tech tapes are edited completely "in-camera," with no post-production. Kuchar's unorthodox methodology is to record single events in real time and then insert or overlay subsequent "scenes," an ingenious strategy that results in a quirky, textured layering of narrative time. This direct, spontaneous use of low-end technology heightens the diaries' unmediated intimacy and subjectivity.
With an eccentric presence that pervades these "home videos," Kuchar veers from the scatological to the sublime in his close-up forays into the kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms of friends and family across the country. These remarkable video journals often resonate with an unexpected poetry. For example, Weather Diaries, in which Kuchar observes weather and food from dreary motel rooms in Oklahoma, reveals alienation and loneliness in the rural American landscape.
Kuchar's almost Proustian accumulation of detailed observations of ordinary life ultimately chronicles not only a personal diary, but a social history of time and place. Scrutinizing his immediate environment, turning the camera on his own "unclean obsessions and ugly, ugly dreams," he uncovers the dramas of the everyday. Writing in Cinematograph, Steve Seid refers to Kuchar as "the roving reporter of the Self, negotiating his social environment." -ELECTRONIC ARTS INTERMIX
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