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PRINT January 2020

THE HERE AND NOW

View of “Frank O’Hara, Lunchtime Poet,” 2019–, Museum of Modern Art, New York. Photo: Heidi Bohnenkamp.

RECENTLY, I was in conversation with a film-studies professor who expressed consternation over her unanticipated difficulty convincing an incoming class of students of Dogme 95’s importance during the 1990s. More precisely, this professor was finding it nearly impossible to render for a younger generation just how transgressive this Lars von Trier–led group had been when it eschewed the staid conventions of studio camerawork in their films for an unfixed point of view. For these students, as she observed to me, it was simply proving hard to grasp how such technical shifts might ever have been jarring. The visual lexicon—radically subjective, radically unstable—was by now quite widespread and common throughout culture. (Literally billions of us walk around with a camera in hand.) Indeed, and perhaps of greater consequence, it was no longer being seen, or understood, in relation to

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