VIDERE | Frame [video]

Videre, Latin for to see, is a video series that plays with the idea of re-seeing. The short works featured here are explorations of sights, sounds, and sensing at The Huntington.

Ornately carved flowers finished in a burnished gold. Thin, simple, straightforward black outline. Heavy, thick, rustic hardwood stained to a deep burnt sienna. All hidden in plain sight. You’ve surely spent time gazing at paintings, photographs, prints hanging on a wall—whether in an art gallery, a museum, or in a friend’s home. But when was the last time you focused your attention on their frames? These structures—whether simple and understated or works of art in their own right—impact how we see and understand the art pieces they surround and support. Just imagine if we were to remove Pinkie from her heavily ornamented surroundings and encircle her instead with a geometric art deco frame or one of shiny, rounded, red plastic. Or consider the Huntington Frontiers story from a few years back that recounts the reframing of Frederic Edwin Church’s Chimborazo, which we deemed necessary precisely because a previous reframing of the painting had made it appear too dark (see “Framed Again,” pages 4-8). [UPDATE (Oct. 24, 2013): Read about the forthcoming reframing of The Blue Boy in “How Do You Frame a Masterpiece?”.]

And so this latest addition to the Videre video series shifts our focus from the framed to the frame. There are three versions of Frame. The visuals of the three versions are identical to one another, but each is “framed” with a unique musical score written and performed by a different artist. How does your experience of the piece change with the different audio tracks? Share your thoughts in the comments section!

“Frame, v.1” (music written and performed by Dustin Zemel)

“Frame, v.2” (music written and performed by Britt Smith)

“Frame, v.3” (music written and performed by David Cheetham)

Also in the Videre series:
“A Song of Pebble and Line”
“Calendula Collection”
“A Study in Simulacra”

Kate Lain is the new media developer in the office of communications at The Huntington.

9 thoughts on “VIDERE | Frame [video]

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  3. Pingback: » VIDERE | Calendula Collection [video]

  4. Pingback: » VIDERE | A Study in Simulacra [video]

  5. The sound accompaniment seemed out of place because in each case the quick changes from one fragment of the frame to the next there as little opportunity to study the rendering differences of each from the others. The reaction to each of the compositions in relation to the frame fragments is less the question than the frenetic exposition from view to view.
    Then there is the question of which frame enhances/pertains to the portraits included in the viewing. It was all a curious exercise of associations. Thank You.

  6. Pingback: » How Do You Frame a Masterpiece?

  7. That is such a fun and interesting concept! Can I ask about your process? Did you edit the piece first to a metronome and send it to three different people, or did you edit it to one score and had the other people do theirs after the fact?

    • You can indeed ask about my process! Before shooting anything, I wrote out a visual score (it looked like a weird musical score)–and the “notes” i worked with were picture frame corners, picture frame sides, empty video frames (for the rests), and closeups on framed artworks without their frames. Then I shot according to my score. I edited, with each note length lasting a different number of frames (so, whole note = 24 frames, quarter note = 6 frames, and so on). Once it was edited, I turned it over to the three music artists to work their music magic with it. And voila!

      Kate Lain
      New Media Developer
      The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens

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