Saturday, 24 July 2010
Late Saturday Night: My Friend Eric and Hurricane
The evening of conversation with Justin Partyka at Diss Corn Hall went fast and well and reasonably along the lines I was thinking about yesterday. JP had the structure of a number of photos to be screened. As it is late I can't sit down to write more than this, but I will YouTube the short film 'trailer' that Justin made with one of hs chief subjects, the now 100 year old Norfolk farmer, Eric.
Fascinating the relationship or tension between movie and still, what one does when placed next to the other. Barthes' idea of the photograph as memento mori is central of course, because at what other time of your life are you likely to be as still as you are in a photo? Clue: it is not a time in your life. But film moves as the dead no longer move. In the film they have animation, locomotion, voice, a narrative that is not fully articulated, that cannot quite become elegy.
And the Hurricane is dead. I remember a piece on snooker by Clive James in which he thinks of the snooker player, Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins, as the embodiment of neurotic sex-starved tension: driven, cramped, starved, puffing at a cigarette. So throat cancer has killed him. Here he is winning the world championship against Canadian Cliff Thorburn, the cool dude with the cool dude moustache, in 1977. The last, decisive frame. First the ritual lighting of the fags by both.
The seventies was the decade of the tense wiry genius: Higgins, Nastase, Cruyff. The whippets of God.