Cinema After Film: A Poetics of Obsolescence?

Thomas Elsaesser
Professor Emeritus, Department of Media and Culture
University of Amsterdam

Wednesday 8 October 6.00 pm
ICTE Auditorium, Sir Llew Edwards Building

This lecture examines the increasingly strategic role played by art spaces in the preservation and promotion of a certain idea of ‘cinema’. Museums and galleries have to stake their claim to be the guardians of cinema as cultural memory and the patrons of moving image installations in the face of the easy accessibility of the filmic heritage and ever more ubiquitous availability. The new alliances between filmmakers, curators and major institutions have favoured media–archaeological perspectives on ‘cinema after film’ that give obsolescence its special status as a gesture of both recovery and resistance. The lecture will be illustrated with examples drawn from the emerging field of artists’ cinema.

Thomas Elsaesser is Professor Emeritus at the Department of Media and Culture of the University of Amsterdam and, since 2013, Visiting Professor at Columbia University. He has authored, edited, and co-edited, some twenty volumes on early cinema, film theory, German and European cinema, Hollywood, new media and installation art. His books have been translated into German, French, Italian, Polish, Hungarian, Hebrew, Korean and Chinese. His recent publications include Film Theory: An Introduction through the Senses, with Malte Hagener (Routledge, 2010), The Persistence of Hollywood (Routledge, 2012), and German Cinema–Terror and Trauma: Cultural Memory since 1945 (Routledge, 2013).

Free. All welcome.
Bookings essential as numbers are limited
RSVP by Friday 3 October
(07) 3365 3046

Refreshments will be served, after the lecture, in the foyer of the UQ Art Museum.

Anthony McCall
Line Describing a Cone 1973
Installation view at the Whitney Museum of American Art exhibition
Into the Light: The Projected Image in American Art 1964–1977 2001
16mm film. Duration 30 minutes
Photo: Henry Graber
© Anthony McCall