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Cross Section

Guy Sherwin
12mins black & white sound 16mm
2 screen film or installation. New versions in progress (2007)

Cross Section

A hand-made film in which image and sound are carved directly out of rolls of black film. Projected on two screens in an accelerating/decelerating pattern.

Cross Section is made by cutting out a shallow u-shaped channel across one side of a tightly-wound roll of 16mm film. On projection this releases an intermittent shaft of light through the picture gate, with its corresponding optical sound occuring a second later. This roll is projected alongside a second roll of film, which has been similarly prepared and then rewound. The shape of the combined films is therefore a palindrome, with one screen gradually accelerating and the other gradually decelerating.

The simplicity of this structure gains complexity due to the sound; although the sound is always one second behind the image, because the roll is changing diameter the sound gradually slips in and out of sync with the image on the next layer.

The master films are always projected. Instead of making copies, new films are cut by hand.

Cross Section can be shown on two adjacent screens in a cinema space, or as a gallery installation using a suspended translucent screen in the centre of the space with projectors at either end.

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