Online catalogue / Kurt Kren :

15/67 TV
15/67 TV
AT / 1967
4 min.

Kren´s next important systematic film is TV (1967). In TV, the system is different in kind and pace to that which exists in much of his other work. Instead of operating primarily at the kinetic level, or with rapid perceptual rhythm, this film involves the audience in a conceptual and reflexive process. Five short sequences each about 8 (sic!) frames long are all shot from the same viewpoint in a quay-side café. They show a window, broken by the silhouettes of objects and people within the café and by the passage of people and a ship outside. Each shot containing some small movement is repeated in the film 21 times, in mathematically determined order. They are separated by short, equal sequences of black spacing, except that longer black sequences separate larger phrases of repeats from each other rather like punctuation. Sometimes the same shots follow each other, sometimes all five shots occur in one phrase. The significance does not lie in the mathematical sequences as such, but in how the viewer attempts to decipher the structure. This overtly reflexive attitude to structure became important in a number of European films about this time (notably by Hein, Nekes, Gidal, Le Grice), often incorporating image repetition. But none as clearly shifts the structural activity away from the interior construction as does TV (incidentally prefiguring Frampton´s Zorns Lemma of 1971). An additional value which TV has as a film (over Zorns Lemma) is the depth of its control of image and motion at levels other than the systematic. The qualities of motion within the shots, and their pace, relate directly to the duration of the shots, and the duration of the spaces between. The nature of the similarities between the images and motion is such that the reflexive mode of the viewer is taken through a number of distinguishable phases, as first the images themselves are recognized and defined, then remembered, then their sequence noted and compared via memory. The reflexive activity constantly interacts with the kinetic and associative aspect of the images and their distribution.

(Malcolm Le Grice, Abstract Film and Beyond, 1977)

Kren frames the image to suggest a proscenium, with a view to the harbor that conveys a literal sense of “tele- vision”. The static framing of the image and the clearly stratified mise-en-scène can hardly provoke interpretation. The sight of the girls does so all the more. Kren, the gentle voyeur - who turns the viewer into a secret accomplice - observes three teenagers, and probably like them, awaits a rendezvous.

(Thomas Trummer)

A film by:
- Kurt Kren

- Avantgarde/Arts

original language:
- no dialogue

Available Prints:
- 16 mm

price: 30 EUR


rental conditions

more on Austrian Independent Film & Video Database:
- Credits
- Festival placements
- Texte und Bilder
- Biographie: Kurt Kren