PRINT April 1972

The Films of Peter Kubelka

PETER KUBELKA IS A MAJOR figure in the contemporary avant-garde film movement—a movement distinguished to a large extent by the casting aside of the traditional narrative form, by the questioning of illusionism in cinema, by a movement towards abstraction, and by a reflexive investigation of the nature of the filmic medium. Kubelka, a Viennese, and the only prominent European in the group, belongs to the especially abstract and Minimalist side of this multifaceted movement.

His experiments in reduction, with an aim towards definition of the medium, are relatable to similar preoccupations of contemporary American painters—with Kubelka most notably sharing an emphasis on the properties of the specific object itself, and with viewer confrontation with that object. His works are more pertinently related to the Viennese School in early 20th-century music (especially Schoenberg and Webern) for

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