The Ups & Downs of Remoscope Footage

The remoscope focuses on the art of restraint; it contains a set of ‘rules’ for the artist, developed by the Lumiere Brothers (the two esh lads in the candid below):

  1. 60 seconds maximumlumiere duration
  2. The camera must be fixed on one frame (with a tripod)
  3. No sound
  4. No zoom, edit, or otherwise effects (source)

Sounds pretty simple, huh? Simple, that is, until you add the aesthetic essential. “Make a video I will want to watch again“, said our tutor, Etienne. Picking a nice scene and hitting the record button for sixty seconds is one thing, but being able to captivate an audience through giving them a sense of ambiguity, a question, or somehow blow them off their feet with a stationary, silent video, is no easy task.

We were split into pairs and given an hour to wander through Innovation Campus (iC) and experiment with the DSLR (which is an abbreviation for fancy-ass digital camera with heaps of little buttons and shiz which first-years can borrow for one night only). My partner and I walked around campus, tossing around ideas like filming the ripples in the pond caused by wind, or capturing ants scurry across concrete – but then we saw an elevator and our ideas began to fall into place.


We decided to completely sass the system; we knew we had to leave the camera stationary, but what if we could make the environment move? We placed the camera and tripod in the corner of the elevator and hit record, then took it in turns to walk in and out, sending the camera on an epic adventure up and down the three floors of iC. It was pretty well received in the classroom, much to my astonishment. This ‘art’ thing is fucking weird.

Through this exercise I learned that art is not always about transgressing borders and exceeding limits; it can also come from imposing limits. It forces an artist to find inspiration in the dull and colour in the grey. This is an idea I look forward to continuing throughout this semester.

I also learned it’s a nifty idea to save your work, because the remoscope I created would probably be a better piece of media than the jazzy GIF above. Hey, at least I’m trying.


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