neon

This unpretentiousness of this video´s title is equals the simplicity of its underlying structure. Nik Thoenen, a graphic artist by trade, constructed an installation consisting of fluorescent tubes mounted in a horizontal row
especially for this video, his first. The arrangement of tubes was then "scanned" with a mounted Super-8 film camera.

The method employed for this experiment had the following
purpose: When neon lights are switched on, a mixture of inert gases trapped inside the tubes is electrically charged, producing an uneven, uncontrollable flickering. Together, the six stacked fluorescent tubes produce a nervous, polyrhythmic light show which lasts for a few seconds. For a closer look at this esthetic phenomenon, it was filmed at all possible speeds from time lapse to slow motion and with all available stops. Timo Novotny, a maker of music videos, then copied the resulting Super-8 material with a digital camera at different shutter speeds and manipulated the speed of the footage during the digital postproduction phase. Finally, an atmospherically dense and somewhat eerie soundtrack by Wolfgang Schloegl was added. Dramatically, this joint project is consummated in a continuous switch from dark to light. Slowly but without hesitation, a disquieting tension builds, and resolution in the form of a "discharge" never comes.
The physical qualities of neon - this "cool light of the modern" - serve as the starting point for this minimalist work´s fascinating composition of light and sound.

(Norbert Pfaffenbichler)

Translation: Steve Wilder


neon is based on an analogic (S8) recording of a neonbarinstallation.

(Nik Thoenen)

Orig. Title
neon
Year
2003
Country
Austria
Duration
5 min
Category
Avantgarde/Arts
Orig. Language
no dialogue
Downloads
neon (Image)
Credits
Director
Timo Novotny, Nik Thoenen
Cinematography
Nik Thoenen
Sound
Wolfgang Schloegl
Editing
Timo Novotny, Nik Thoenen
Production
VIDOK, re-p
Available Formats
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
4:3
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Festivals (Selection)
2003
Hamburg - Int. Kurzfilm-Festival & No Budget
Edinburgh - International Film Festival
Wien - Viennale - Int. Filmfestwochen
Weimar - back-up festival. new media in film
Augsburg - Kurzfilmwochenende
2004
Buenos Aires Festival Int. de Cine Independiente BAFICI