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In 1969 experimental filmmaker Walter Ungerer began a five part series of films dealing with the journey of life, and the search for truth and un… Read More
In 1969 experimental filmmaker Walter Ungerer began a five part series of films dealing with the journey of life, and the search for truth and understanding. Part One and Two, INTRODUCTION TO OOBIELAND and UBI EST TERRAM OOBIAE? were created while Ungerer was living in a loft in New York City. Outdated film was used. In 1969 film laboratories were no longer using the chemicals necessary to process the high speed film stock so long the staple of television news crews. One laboratory was willing to develop the film. The results were disastrous. The film would not dry. Carrying the material to his large loft in paper bags, Ungerer strung the films from end to end in many rows. There was about twelve hundred feet of it stretched over the space, hanging there for three months until it eventually did dry. Then the editing process began with film that had the added texture on its surface of dust and dirt present in the loft. Thus two very unconventional films were born. Multiple layers of picture clips were sent out for test masters, not double exposures but sometimes ten and twelve layers of different clips sandwiched one on top of the next to be reproduced as a single multi exposure master. A hole punch was used to punch out circles, then re-introduce the circles in new areas. A similar approach was used with the sound: layering, and playing the material backwards or slowing it down or speeding it up. When finished the two films became instant successes with the avant-garde film community. The Museum of Modern Art included UBI EST TERRAM OOBIAE? in a showcase reel it sent around the world in 1970, representing the best of American experimental films. The Ann Arbor Film Festival included parts one and two of Oobieland in its own national touring program Read Less
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