mikecelona.net - Originally conceived as an experiment in live video mixing and time-manipulation, IMC in practice has also been realized as an extension of the surprisingly complex semi-abstract visual compositions that can be achieved through the random layering of repetitive image projections—a practice that can be traced back to 2nd century Chinese magic lanterns which predate modern motion picture technology by nearly 1,800 years. Whereas those ancient magic lanterns utilized overlapping hand-painted glass plates and candles to achieve said effect, this project updates the process by using video loops triggered by a MIDI keyboard which also simultaneously generates the notes that make up the soundtrack. Since the composition is entirely improvised, not only are no two performances exactly the same, but while the viewer may be able to recognize individual recurring elements throughout the piece I challenge them to identify any two frames from the final video that are exactly the same either. This is a testament to the nearly limitless number of permutations that can be generated from a limited and repetitive set of images, especially when time and the arbitrary nature of human impulse are thrown in as additional variables.
The source footage was shot using an in-camera slow shutter effect during a rehearsal of choreographer Scott Putman’s “Escaping The Silence of Winters Night” performed by an ensemble of dancers representing multiple companies during the culmination of the 2010 Great Friends Dance Festival hosted in Newport, Rhode Island by the Island Moving Company (IMC) islandmovingco.org/