Icelandic artist Hallveig Ágústsdóttir (who happens to live in Ghent) is one of our frequent visitors. We asked her tell us about a work of art that she loves: ‘Threshold’, a 1972 film by Malcolm Le Grice.
“I have chosen a work that I like very much for the way the maker works the visual footage and the audio track together. The work is the abstract film Threshold from 1972, by British filmmaker Malcolm Le Grice. With his experiments and endless curiosity into the medium of film and video, Le Grice is one of the pioneers of British abstract filmmaking. His body of work since the 1960s onwards consist of single-screen films, expanded cinematic performances and more recently digital works for up to three screens. A constant interest in the relationship between abstract film and music/sound runs through Le Grice’s oeuvre, which has led to collaborations with a number of musicians including Brian Eno and the AMM improvisation group.”
Excerpt from an interview with Malcolm Le Grice, by Hallveig Ágústsdóttir:
HA: Creating most of the audio material for your films yourself, do you consider yourself a composer as well as a filmmaker?
MLG: The truth is that my films are structured more like music than they are structured by film, because I abandoned the idea of narrative a long time ago. They are not narrative. Sometimes there are, as I said, symbolic developments, so in a way the structures are closer to music. But also then, looking at a lot of the work recently, as much of the experience of the film is contained in the music as it is in the visual. The visual and the music are running really together. But it is extremely difficult to work the sound at the same time as you are working the visual. You know that yourself through the editing. So, for example, in the work that I am working on now, I shall come back when I’ve effectively finished the visual track and re-work the sound.