Saturday, October 6, 2012

Maya Deren: until the cinema, "like a mute, had never spoken"

Maya Deren: Entangled in the Web of Modernity*
CC Jean Stimmell
This is Part II in My Ode to Maya Deren.
To see the original post, click here.

The Importance of the Visual Metaphor:  I like the following quote by Maya Deren from a letter she wrote to film archivist, James Card,  reflecting back a decade to when she made her first film: 

"Meshes of the Afternoon is my point of departure.  I am not ashamed of it; for I think that, as a film, it stands up very well.  …I had been a poet up until then, and the reason that I had not been a very good poet was because actually my mind worked in images which I had been trying to translate or describe in words; therefore, when I undertook cinema, I was relieved of the false step of translating images into words, and could work directly so that it was not like discovering a new medium so much as finally coming home into a world whose vocabulary, syntax, grammar, was my mother-tongue; which I understood, and thought in, but, like a mute, had never spoken…."  **
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Please see my other blog entries on Maya Deren:
Ode to Maya Deren
Facts and Fictions of the Mind

* This Photoshop creation combines and manipulates a photograph I took of a tent caterpillar web along the Merrimack River 9/4/10 with a still image of Maya Deren @ public domain, taken from her movie, At Land. 

** http://claudemathews.com/2009/12/30/film-guide-to-maya-derens-and-alexander-hammids-meshes-of-the-afternoon/
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