Critical Writing Index

(Re)Performing the Archive: Barbara Lattanzi & Hollis Frampton in Dialogue

by Chris Hill

Millennium Film Journal, Winter 2003, no. 39/40, pp. 66-81

Chris Hill directs a discussion of Barabara Lattanzi's "idiomorphic software" as the contemporary, digitized counterpart to Hollis Frampton's approaches to filmmaking in the 1970s. By consciously adopting the editing strategies of Frampton's Critical Mass (1971), Lattanzi developed HF Critical Mass, a "real time performative instrument." The software itself, freely accessible through Lattanzi's website, allows users/viewers to utilize and interact with their own personal archives: still images, video and sound. The interface challenges modes of visual projection, transforming such linear practices to a more performative realm.

"Her idiomorphic software tool shares with structural filmmaking of that era the desire to critique the industrial model of tool and content development, to explore the construction of moving image media in generative ways other than narrative construction, and to engage the viewer directly in the project of constructing meaning in the work..." (Hill 68-70) HF Critical Mass repositions its user as film editor, with its process reminiscent of the material, tangible and intimate relationship developed with the film strip, with great attention to gesture.

ITEM 2003.126 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

HF Critical MassBarbara Lattanzi

Muscle and Blood PianoBarbara Lattanzi

Surface Tension: Applied Memory Mutation SoftwareBarbara Lattanzi

Critical MassHollis Frampton

NostalgiaHollis Frampton

Violin Power the PerformanceSteina Vasulka

Woody Vasulka