1:1 // a sonic-stereoscopic film poem
by Telemach Wiesinger (cinematography) and Alexander Grebtschenko (music)
A wooden stereo viewer, which already impressed people with "3D" in the pioneering days of light drawing, inspired the German artist Telemach Wiesinger to create the half-hour film poem 1:1. The wide-screen image, composed on 16 mm black-and-white film, consists of two individual images each, between which - amazingly different from a stereoscope - a third dimension unfolds. In dialogue with the soundtrack designed by Alexander Grebtschenko, 1:1 becomes a unique audiovisual experience.
Woven from staged scenes and images collected on journeys, the film poem tells about being on the road with open eyes. The frame story shows a young couple in front of a country estate on the French Loire; while she plays table tennis, he sets off to go fishing ... The pictures lure the viewer from a quiet angler's paradise to busy harbor landscapes and a broad ocean horizon - perhaps a daydream, memories of the young angler, populated by the surreal figures of his mind?
The creative play with „stereoscopy“ unfolds an impressive visual effect. Parallel with slight time shifts, mirrored or complementary, the pairs of pictures enter into dialogue in many ways: overlapping parts that create their own unique forms, positives that meet their negatives, merging of content and diverging again. The element of water is almost physically perceptible, and its moving variety of forms guides the wanderlust.
Anyone who thought 16mm black-and-white film was obsolete will experience its timelessness in 1:1. For Telemach Wiesinger, the analog film workshop is as essential as a painter's brushes, spatulas and paint. From recording to developing to composition at the animation table, the material passes through his hands several times. All "effects" come from the manual process: the use of filters and multiple exposure directly in the camera (a BOLEX with spring mechanism), experimenting with single-frame projector and single-frame camera of a CRASS optical printer, editing with an adhesive film press.
A lot of exact planning is necessary in this handicraft art, but a little bit of coincidence is welcome as well - for example, when incompletely dissolved crystals of citric acid in the developer solution appear in the image as snowflakes or hailstones. 1-to-1 in the making, the final release in HD on DCP shows not only the real film grain but also the creative potential of such defects. The astounding result of Wiesinger’s consistent approach clearly shows: Never could such a film be made with digital "apps".
The editing and sound work on this film was closely intertwined, and so the elaborate image finds its highly appropriate counterpart in sound. Composer Alexander Grebtschenko, whose work moves in a wide field between written music, improvisation, electronic music and sound installation, combines for 1:1 artisan noise-making and instrumental music in masterful studio work. Dynamic transitions and a leading musical arch merge the dance of images into an audiovisuaxl unity. The soundtrack answers the visual "stereoscopy" in a complex way and an exciting dialogue unfolds between sound and image. Last but not least, one of the composer's surreal kinetic objects, performing in the film, makes the humor of both film partners unmistakable.
Thanks to this creative enthusiasm, the new film poem of Telemach Wiesinger is capable of transforming everyday scenes into cinematic gems.
The decomposing photographs of the old stereo viewer, photographed by the once famous landscape photographer Giorgio Sommer (1834-1914), appearing towards the end of the film, are reminiscent of the inflation of images that was already beginning at that time. Filmpoem 1:1 has the power to withstand this inflation - in the spirit of Jean Cocteau who probably coined the term "cinéaste poète" (poet-filmmaker) and once wrote: "A film is not a dream that is told, but a dream that we dream together thanks to hypnosis.“
See you at the cinema!
(Thomas Spiegelmann, 2020)