Undesirable Owen Land: Continuity and Difference in American Avant-Garde Film
Abstract: The American avant-garde filmmaker Owen Land (formerly George Landow, 1944-2011) occupied a marginal position within post-war "structural film." This study seeks to address Land's peripheral inclusion within the movement by examining his use of parody, humor, and citation. Such devices, this text argues, criticize or edify scenes, styles, and figures drawn from a broad history of experim... read moreental filmmaking. Detailed analysis of Land's films reveals a network of influence that incorporates films by Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage, and Hollis Frampton as well as texts by film historians P. Adams Sitney and Paul Arthur. Many of Land's parodies exercise a hidden polemic, accentuated through biting humor and absurd word play. Beyond the tendentious relations between Land and other structural filmmakers, the imitation of filmic events and texts reaffirms parodied films and figures within a canonical history of the medium. This thesis accounts for these variations of parody throughout Land's oeuvre by relating them to the social dynamics of avant-garde film and Land's place within the discipline.
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2017.
Submitted to the Dept. of Art and Art History.
Advisor: Jacob Stewart-Halevy.
Committee: Malcolm Turvey, and Sarah Keller.
Keywords: Art history, and Film studies.read less