Pintando el Celuloide

Clemente Calvo

This is a set of three shorts in which the celluloid is painted on by hand: Fuego / Fire, Calanda 1968 and Where are you Mum? For these pieces Calvo recovers a technique used during the 50s in experimental film which was also used in some expressionist films: painting directly on the celluloid. This technique, which has a hypnotic effect on the viewer, has to be watched in order to understand all its visual possibilities.

These three works have been made using this technique. The first one, Fuego / Fire, makes use of Stravinsky’s music in order to generate a warm atmosphere. At different moments we are reminded of the lights and shadows that fire projects on the wall. This attractive visual exercise seduces the spectator, who, very soon, finds herself captured by the game of sounds, lights and shadows that the artist presents.

The second piece, Calanda 1968, is instanced by the fortuitous and humourous encounter in Calanda during the Easter of 1968 between the Aragonese filmmakers Luis Buñuel and Antonio Maenza. A visual space with surreal touches is generated, within which strange signs and colours intermingle over real images. This small homage displays a certain visual preciosity in order to rememorate both a very precise time period in Spanish culture, and one of its major figures.

The final piece, Where are you Mum? comprises a series of visual variations that occur over the image of a child on a swing in a park. The questions that the piece instances can only be understood by watching the video.

These are then three exercises, which in spite of starting of with the same technique, offer very different results, albeit equally interesting.

Technical datasheet

  • Title: Pintando el Celuloide
  • Direction: Clemente Calvo
  • Production: Clemente Calvo. 1999.
  • Duration: 00:05:18
  • Original format: 16 mm
  • Formats: Betacam Digital - DVD
  • TV systems: NTSC - PAL
  • License: Creative Commons