Cinema Lumiere - Sala Scorsese > 12:00


In the beginning were the primary questions: what is film? What is the true essence of film? What are its expendable, indispensable and unique elements? The answer embodied in the foundations of the Archeoscope is: film is the articulation of light. If cinematography is primarily the articulation of light, what are the consequences for film as we know it? Each body determines both the possibilities and the limitations of its occupant. The Archeoscope was constructed in order to investigate, experiment with and experience the essential aspects of cinematographic phenomena. To observe in practice the nature of the relationship between creative process and technology. Between the apparatus and its operator. To examine how the technologies we use influence and determine the way we work, operate, create. In other words: to actively and practically reconsider and rethink various consequences of the established tradition. These thoughts are inspired by Vilém Flusser, among others. All this is done in a playful way, experimenting with the body of the film. Technical standards are indeed a useful canon, especially for the efficiency of a large-scale production, but at the same time, they impose rigid limitations on the hypothetically boundless ways of articulating light. So the next key question in this game is: what if film?
The Archeoscope can project all stan ard film formats (8, 16, 35, 70mm, etc.), but also various types of materials up to 14cm wide (transparent tapes, bandages, laces, fabrics, wrapping tapes, bubble wrap, barricade tapes, etc.). It has four independent light sources and optical systems. These make it possible to project four different areas of a film strip at the same time. Each light can be turned on and off in three different ways: metronomically, with precisely adjustable durations of on/off times; through an optical cyclic sequencer, or via optically read impulses (marks/dots) on the film strip. There are therefore countless combinations and possible rhythms and polyrhythms in which each light can be activated. The frame rate is no longer fixed to a regular monotonous pattern, but can be fully ‘musical’ – it can be composed into shorter cyclic structures, or into larger linear time frames.
It is also important to note that the only way to witness – to actually, truly see – a projection of the Archeoscope is to physically attend a live screening – in the presence of the apparatus and its operator – and see it with one’s own naked eyes. This is not only due to fact that each projection of any particular Archeoscope film is never absolutely identical, as it is a live projection, but it is also technically impossible to capture and reproduce the projection in the way it looks immediately to the human eye.

Jan Kulka