In, Over & Out
In, Over & Out
There have been countless tributes made to the Lumière Brothers´ Workers Leaving the Factory since it was first exhibited in 1895, but few have been as technically ambitious, aesthetically assaultive or conceptually compelling as Sebastian Brameshuber´s In, Over & Out.
The main bulk of the action here depicts a small courtyard, with young adults entering and exiting the double-doors of an ostensibly anonymous building. This isn´t a factory in the traditional sense, and the cast members don´t belong to the industrial proletariat as they may have done in the Lumières´ film. The shooting location here is the staff entrance at Le Fresnoy, the prestigious art school in Tourcoing, France. Founded in 1997, it was a popular entertainment site for local workers between 1905 and 1977.
Brameshuber captures this most quotidian of gestures, rinsed and repeated since the very start of cinema, with twelve simultaneous cameras — all arranged along a simple enough x-axis and encompassing celluloid, analogue video and digital formats. With dizzying and enthralling syncopation, he proceeds again and again between these formats with the use of a specially made video sequencer.
With only half a moment for each blink-and-miss image to register, we only have the rapidly fluctuating aspect ratios, the continual left-to-right succession between formats, and the dramatically varied audiovisual textures as clues of the film´s practical mechanisms. The visual set-up allows us to see and capture a single moment that in fact comprises an entire history of moving-image technology. Put another way, Brameshuber lends a new sense of technical awe to an otherwise routine film scene some 120 years after humans first saw it. (Michael Pattison)