In 1969, the post-minimal sculptor Richard Serra screened a set of four brief films during the exhibition Anti-Illusion: Procedures/Materials, which took place at the Whitney Museum in New York and functioned as a showcase of the new movement of process art. Involving the repetition of various bodily gestures such as grasping or scraping, the films have become collectively known as the Hand and Process series. The lecture will address how these films can be situated within the artistic, filmic and social context of the period. The significance of the Hand and Process series is that they developed a singular dialectic between the structural conditions of sculpture and film. The series occupies, therefore, a hybridic position, which cannot be reduced to either sculptural or filmic categories of evaluation. Reacting against the customary approach of the art documentary, Serra strove to make both means and ends explicit in his films. To this purpose, he incorporated film technique as an intrinsic element in the very process of production; the camera-tool became a physical part of the work’s structure and did not just function as an external recording device. Thus, one might argue, in the Hand and Process series Serra attempted to co-ordinate the ‘industrial’ technology of film with the ‘natural’ techniques of the body. This lecture will discuss the contradictory effects of this endeavor, but also inquire into the shift in Serra’s approach to film in his subsequent work.

Eric de Bruyn teaches Art History and Archaeology at the University of Groningen, NL. In his current research he focusses primarily on artistic practices which operate in the gap between the visual arts and technological media of reproduction, such as photography,film and video. De Bruyn has published on Dan Graham, GerrySchum, Mel Bochner and Marcel Broodthaers among others.

After the lecture: screening Richard Serra films 1968 - 1979 @ Cinema Arenberg free shuttle service provided


Related events

  • Thu 14.12.2006
    20:00 - 20:00
  • Practical info


    Entrance fee:

  • Artists