Cello and experimental films

The program on Tuesday the 16th of September is devoted to the intermedial intersection between film and music, in particular cello compositions. In collaboration with the Cello Biennale, EYE will present a compilation film program with live music by the cellist Örs Köszeghy and artists’ talks.

Before and after the film projection, two performances by the Cello Box, a poetic mini-theatre reminding a flying bird, with cellist Katherina Gross and the composition of Arnold Marinissen, will take place in the EYE Arena.

The film program

Opus II, III, IV, 1921-25 by Walter Rutmann, music by the cellist Örs Köszeghy.
Three short, abstract, paint-on-glass animations, edited to re-create musical effects. Part of the avant-garde productions from the 1920s, these three works were often screened by the Filmliga movement all together. The Opus films are exactly the kind of modernist self-expressions that the Nazi government would later decry as degenerate and inherently un-German.


Ricercar, 1984, 4 min, 16 mm, by Claudia Kölgen, original soundtrack: Frances Marie Uitti (cello)
The interference of one space with another is the theme of the film. The title is a musical term meaning to start anew, and this is interpreted by the cello in the soundtrack. The film is a journey through an abandoned industrial building, but it is really two films in one, since the centre of the frame is occupied by another moving image taken from a second camera point of view. So what we see are two views literally interfering with each other in a continual, vertiginous process of change. What we are left with is a vision of the pure relativity of space.


Oog (Eye, 1995, 10 min composition for cello by Michel van der AA) for cello and tape shows some resemblance to Auburn, which was written a year earlier, but this time the different sides of the instrument – the continuous bowed sound and several kinds of staccato playing – are introduced right from the start. Also, the piece already bears some distinctive Van der Aa fingerprints, such as the double demisemiquavers and the mechanic pulse. As in Auburn, the sound track creeps in almost unnoticeably and then gradually takes the initiative. The electronic sounds are once more derived from the instrument itself, with the exception of the sound of clashing stones, which persists prominently after the climax. A remarkable feature are the illusionary contrasts between the dry and spatial acoustic effects. In the end (but here one needs to see a live performance) even the musical reality becomes an illusion, as the cellist mimes bowing her instrument while the final tone is produced by the loudspeakers only. It is the kind of game Michel van der Aa is fond of playing.

Oog will be executed by the cellist Örs Köszeghy.


Etudes Solares, by Frank Scheffer, 1988, 24 min, 35 mm, music by the cellist Örs Köszeghy.
Experimental film in juxtaposition with the composition ‘Etudes Boreales’ by John Cage here performed by the cellist Örs Köszeghy.


The film will be introduced by the director Frank Scheffer and presented in a new screening set-up, influenced by the philosophical I-Ching system.

cage en scheffer
John Cage and Frank Scheffer.


The Degenerate Opus of Walter Ruttmann



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