Bruce McClure (USA)

Se Volessi Fare Un Fuoco Che Seza Dano Infuocherebbe Una Sala, Farai Cosi
italian premiere

Se Volessi Fare Un Fuoco Che Seza Dano Infuocherebbe Una Sala, Farai Cosi (a kind of mispelled version of If You Wanted to Make a Fire that Burned a Room Without Damaging It, Here’s How) is a live-cinema performance that Bruce McClure has re-elaborated for Netmage 11. “I can say that in 1999 I did a performance in Italy in a private house (Via Cardinale, Lucca, Friday 26 November 1999) and I kept the program I wrote at the time. The event was called My Botolo: Lightning Urn. The old program read: ‘Yes, looking to distance myself from the cinematic theater without leaving it completely, I find myself at the border, in an area 3,5 mm long stretching to infinity. In truth it was an argument against the proposal of making soundless music with moving images. Launching noises with a pyramid of horizontal light that could be its windmill.’ My Botolo barked at and bit space while it chewed time. Audio came from the optical sound system. Many are afraid of the dark; with sound missing, it would be intolerable! There would be only the sound of your guts. Signals coming from the projector are treated with pedal effects in a temporal matrix and sent to the PA system. It’s important to have pretty high volume to do a music night, a song-and-dance event based on a tenuous narrative plot.”

Bruce McClure studied architecture and visual art, lives and works in New York and is one of the rare exponents of the tradition of expanded cinema linked to the tensions of the world of visual art and music coming from North America. He has worked with John Cage, recognizing the importance of his work from Ken Jacobs, and is the last of the originals in his research interested in the approach and vision of Marcel Duchamp (from cinema to Rotorieliefs). Although his work has been shown at an international level in museums and galleries in the form of films and installations, he has found space through unforgettable performance above all in the arena of experimental cinema. He has realized a series of live events and installations with modified projectors (as opposed to many working live with film, McClure intervenes directly on the projector, distorting its functionality) and other self-produced devices that produce projections of light and geometric forms in assonance with the modality of the most radical structures of experimental cinema, where sound and image mix in a crescendo that range from typically minimal cadences of the avantgarde almost to traditions of the most rigorous analogue techniques. Each live calls for the use of effect and loop pedals, which McClure employs to interact with the task of adjusting the projection lenses.