I received the book in the mail and wasn’t sure; a collection of experience, thoughts and ideas on Art. Viewpoints. It’s not my domain. I usually go to a museum or an Art exhibition out of curiosity or courtesy; sometimes to see a specific artist for inspiration. I know when something is technically well done, both my father and brother are visual artists, but I can’t judge anything beyond how it aesthetically affects me, meaning either it is pleasant or it’s not. I may like or not like whatever it is that I’m looking at or, within the conceptual art world, experiencing, but it doesn’t really go any further than that. So when I picked up Heterochronia & Vanishing Viewpoints by Marcelo Guimarães Lima, the title was enough to almost put me off but my curiosity got the best of me.
Then, to my surprise, I found myself reading it in one sitting. Much of it rang very near to my own experiences and thoughts on movie making, not the business, but the actual act of creation, making good art, meeting other talented filmmakers and the experience that goes with it. I think, because of the commercialization and the mass industrialization of films, that are now movies, we – or I – forget to lavish in discussions about the process and critical thinking because we are – or I am – too busy making deals and trying to market our ideas, time, value and products. So I wanted to take this opportunity and share a passage from this wonderful book that reminded me why I make movies, why I love writing, why I majored in linguistics (called Science du Langage – or – science of language in French) and why filmmaking is so exciting:
“Just as the goal of science is the knowledge of objective reality, the aim of art is the knowledge of subjective reality. In both cases, and considering their different paths and approaches, the common goal is to make the human world, the world of human experience, meaningful. […] The result of science is the expansion of knowledge, and with it, technological development. In a similar way art results in the expansion of human experience, the enrichment of personal experience, the expansion/socialization of subjective life.” [Heterochronia & Vanishing Viewpoints; Art Chronicles and Essays by Marcelo Guimarães Lima, Metasenta Publications, 2012, pg48]
So, filmmaking is both science and art. It exists within objective and subjective realities because the more science advances, the more possibilities we have of expanding our own imagination within film storytelling and transcending the current symbolization of human experiences to create new ones. Isn’t it exciting?
Take the James Bond legacy for example. Watch Dr. No with Sean Connery from 1962 and, then, go to the movie-theater and experience Skyfall with Daniel Craig 50 years later, the 23rd film on the subject to be made. No other art form is the absolute synthesize of the passage above. No other art form has morphed itself so intrinsically with science as filmmaking has. It’s the one platform where objectivity, subjectivity and semiotics walk hand-in-hand or better dance together in a choreography of infinite boundaries.
It’s quite exciting to dabble in a medium that so closely resembles and mirrors our own existence and development as a society.
Thank you Marcelo Guimarães Lima for your reflections.
Oh and also thank you Daniel Craig for being such an excellent James Bond. 😉