Document (1974-1975)

In the rarely-seen film Document, by founding member of the American art group Co-Lab Projects, Coleen Fitzgibbon fabricated unperforated 16mm Micro-Film of bank receipts, deeds, checks, and other personal documents. In order to project this object, she took the film to a perforation shop. Noteworthy in this process is that the laborers punching sprocket holes in the film were blind – a curious coincidence that foregrounds the tactile nature of the film. Originally, Document was performed using analytical projectors to slow down certain passages, or hold a frame for a certain duration. The soundtrack was also performed, edited live with a cassette recorder and playing key passages from various cassettes while switching tapes back-and-forth. As a Micro-Film the work was never meant to be projected on a 16mm projector but scrutinized on a special viewer by bank clerks, accountants, and researchers. The optical effect of Document’s displacement of the original footage unleashes an ever-cascading barrage of pictorial fragments pulverized on the screen; the absence of framelines gives the film its scrolling character caught in a continuum of slippage, and thus incessantly calling to mind the derailed passage of “document-as-object” making its way through the projector’s windy path.

Film Still from Document (1975-76)

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