2. Radicalidad como método: hacia un quehacer excéntrico

< práctica documental contra el ministerio de la memoria

< primeras preguntas a lo real

En la discusión sobre las tensiones políticas de la obra documental, su resonancia histórica y sobre todo su potencial disruptivo, (de intervención y disputa del relato histórico, decíamos en la primera sesión), la oposición entre máquinas de guerra y máquinas de estado, como parte del Tratado de Nomadología de Deleuze y Guattari, y como parte también de lo que llaman una ciencia excéntrica (centrífuga, nómada), es algo que ha inspirado mis desplazamientos disciplinares hacia la práctica documental en los últimos años, desde el planteamiento de preguntas de investigación, hasta el diseño narrativo y las estrategias de apropiación tecnológica.

En la sesión de hoy, a partir del material de referencia, me gustaría extender estas preguntas hacia el quehacer excéntrico desde el documental a partir del material de referencia.

Farocki: What is documentary and what non-documentary for film. Usa el ejemplo de un anuncio que apela a (a) traje blanco como signo de credibilidad (b) dispositivo de la cámara en mano

  • lenguaje internacional de práctica / modo documental. Steyerl.

De regreso a Farocki y algunas problematizaciones sobre el documental: La cámara persigue (no anticipa). El comentario y la instrucción.

¿Cuáles son los efectos de la imperfección estética? Siempre hay una búsqueda, sugiere Farocki, de una prueba, de una forma de confirmar la autenticidad del acto documental. Una característica que tiene que ver con la crudeza o inmediación de la imagen.

“We knew the script”, dice al contar la anécdota de la balacera que querían filmar. Hacia al final, permite reflexionar sobre el efecto acústico de la acción de cámara en el documental.

Trinh T. Minh-ha, The Totalizing Quest of Meaning.

¿Qué es el cine documental -y en el contexto de este curso, la práctica documental-?

“Nada es más pobre que una verdad expresada como se pensó”. WB.

Cinema as an archive of traditions – (“reified corpus“)

“What is put fort as truth is often no more than a meaning” 92

Film as absence of truth

Concepts are no less practical than images or sound” “But the link between the name and what is named is conventional, not phenomenal”

— teoría del cine

Valor de la observación íntima

Aesthetic of objectivity and the development of comprehensive technologies of truth, capable of promoting (…) y habla de una serie de estándares (cinema verité, etc.), de lo documental como una rutina de filmación.

Presentación de la evidencia /// archivo & el testimonio

“The real? Or the repeated resurrection of the real, an operation of (…) habla de intermedialidad de lo real con ejemplos clásicos como Grierson y Franju; la ficción aprende del documental, retoma cita de Benjamin sobre la expresión de la verdad; el documental puede ser fácilmente un estilo o conjunto de expresiones similares (modo documental de Steyerl).

You must recreate reality because reality runs away, reality denies reality

— documentary and politics in its demand to “mean” at all cost (propaganda y educación de masas).

Framing reality in its course, Framer Framed

In anthropology, film is often reduced to methodological aspects of research design (“The cruel radiance of what is”)

“Unless an image displaces itself from its natural state, it acquires no significance. Displacement causes resonance

Sharta Gokhale

Blanchot…inspired and unconcerned decision…Orpheus Gaze…contemplation.

Maurice Blanchot

Meaning can neither be imposed nor defined. Although every film is in itself a form of ordering and closing, each closure can defy its only closure, opening onto other closures, thereby emphasizing the interval between apertures and creating a space in which meaning fascinated by what escapes and exceedes it” (109).

“Yet such illusion (the quest for meaning) is real; it has its own reality, one in which the subject of knowledge, the subject of Vision, or the subject of meaning continues to deploy established power relations, assuming Himself to be the basic reserve of reference in the totalistic quest for the referent, the true referent that lies out there in nature, in the dark, waiting patiently to be unveiled and disciplined correctly: to be redefined. Perhaps then, an imagination that goes toward the texture of reality is one capable of playing upon the illusion in question and the power it exerts” (106-107).


cine y descubrimiento

¿Qué es lo que es y su radiancia?

“I don’t think either of us knows what the rules and regulations of ethnographic filmmaking are. Our work fits awkwardly within anthropology, awkwardly within art, and awkwardly within cinema” Verena Paravel

Michael Taussig. Mimesis and Alterity: A Particular History of the Senses. 
John Berger. Modos de ver.

“All documentary, just by its nature, is going to be inadequate” Ben Rivers

“Once you recognize that it’s impossible, then you’re freed of this burden of trying to say or show everything about someone” Lucien Castaing-Taylor

“And then there are all these ways in which the moment somebody becomes aware of the camera, then they start performing for it. But rather than being false, this can actually reveal aspects of the person that would never appear if they were indifferent to the camera (…) The difference between the social actor and the filmic actor is really intricate. It can be subtle or complex, a difference of degree or kind. There are an infinity of performativities in life, and in all our films (…) These selves blend and merge into each other. It’s not as if one is true and one is false” Lucien Castaing-Taylor

“It’s about that interplay of these layers of looking” Ben Rivers

“For me, there’s a dance between both fact and fiction, and between the filmmaker and the filmed. At the same time, and this is something totally different, we’re increasingly interested in the non-human, which has an agency of its own, even if we tend to overlook or deny it. We’re interested in the mutual constitution of the human and the non-human, whether animal, technological, or natural. Humans have increasingly receded from getting pride of place in our films. We try to relativize and resituate them in a much wider ecological sphere” Verena Pavarel

“tactilismo, odorismo” Laszlo Moholy-Nagy

“Films are things that we consume and then that person becomes the consumed” Ben Rivers

“I do feel that even though I become really attached — even too attached — to people that I work with, if you’re moving from one subject to another, one group of subjects to another, there is an act of violence there, too” Lucien Castaing-Taylor

“I don’t think anyone’s necessarily exploiting anyone. You guys are so politically correct. If you find what I can only call the juste distance between filmmaker and filmed, even if each wants to get something — and probably something different — out of it, that’s not necessarily exploitative. It can even be a kind of love, or a king of beneficence, on both sides” Verena Paravel

“I guess it’s more that the film and the life lived making it are intricately linked, and that the film is about this moment between me the filmmaker and the person or people in the film” Ben Rivers

“We also have a profound attachment to the real, as something, a kind of surplus or excess that exceeds the maker’s intentions, that is different from most artists and even most documentarians. It’s an aesthetic as well as an ethical attachment” Verena Paravel

Reassemblage, Trinh T. Minh-ha