August 20,1982 / Montrose voice 23
'In Sequence' at Museum of Fine Arts Shows 'Conquest of Time'
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"Men Boxing, Open hand," from "Animal Locomotion," 1887. Photographed
by Eadweard Muybridge.
By Steven Cuniberti
The Museum of Fine Arts, at Montrose
and Bissonnet, offerB selection from the
Target Collection of American Photc
graphy in a show entitled "In Sequence"
until September 19.
Informally categorized according to
their treatment of time, panorama, montage and narrative, the selection of photographs, lithographs, books, graphics and
sculpture which comprise this Bhow illustrate artists' concern with the problem of
rendering the moving time frame of life in
the medium of still photography.
In 1887, before cinematic pioneer Sergie
Eisenstein gave us Film Form and Film
Sense, Eadweard Muybridge photo-
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"Horse and Rider, Galloping," from "Animal Locomotion," 1887. Photographed by Eadweard Muybridge.
graphed his still fascinating Animal Loco-
motion Project, sequential still
photographs of animals, including
humans, in chacteristic activity. Muybridge had found a way to stop time and
let viewers control its passage by the
length of time they allowed themselves to
be absorbed in studying each exposure.
About ten yearB later the "cinema fan-
tastique" of the early French filmmakers
(unmentioned in thiB show) demonstrated
the fledgling medium to be the king ofthe
time machines by allowing action to be
speeded up, slowed down, or even reversed
at the filmmaker's direction.
After almost one hundred years, some
artists are turning, or returning, to non-
cinematic methods of considering time.
Athena Tacha used Muybridge's continuous action sequential display form to
present the discontinuous changes of Gesture I, A Study of Finger Positions (1981).
She further recalls her predecessors in the
use of photographic process resurrected
from Muybridge'B era.
The artists represented by "In
Sequence" seem to fall into two camps:
those who are primarily developing new
techniques for documenting traditional
notions of time, and those who present
methods of seeing time in a new way.
Ester Parada's Past Recovery (1979) is a
panorama through time. It is a family
album photograph with personal associa
tions and events marking the passage of
time gently exposed over the primary
With his Newsweek (1974), Robert Hei-
necken evokes the crush of simultaneously occurring current events by cutting
and interweaving images from the weekly
news magazine without having removed
the pages from their binding. Heinecken is
also responsible for the satiric Socio-Duo-
Habliment Studies I, II, and III (1981).
Muybridge's studies are not the only
close brushes "In Sequence" has with the
narrative cinematic form. Rober Frank, a
sometime award-winning filmmaker,
offers a proofsheet exposed with footage
from his film, "The Sin of Jesus" (1969);
and Duane Miachaela, a master of narrative, is represented by his 1973 work, "5:15
a.m., April 22, 1904," an example that
unfortunately does not illustrate the
artist's ability to develop a plot both horizontally and vertically. Film plots develop
horizontally while prose can develop in
A film on the relationship between
cinema and still photography is to be
shown as part of the regular film series at
the museum Friday, August 27 at 8:00
p.m., but the excitement of discovering
new views of the phenomenon of time is
afforded by the show itself, Tuesday
through Saturday, 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.,
and Sunday, 1:00-6:00 p.m.
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