Is er overeenkomst tusschen klank, rhythme en kleurafwisseling?
In the February 1932 issue of the magazine Filmliga, Willem Bon takes an extensive look at the film experiments conducted at Studio Ivens.
He describes two film experiments that he made himself. About the first, Is er overeenstemming tusschen klank, rhythme en kleurafwisseling, Bon notes:
‘I have now asked myself the question: is there any agreement between colour variation and sound rhythm, i.e. is sound rhythm (musical rhythm) reinforced by synchronous colour variation? To keep the experiment as pure as possible, I first started with a short film, from which I omitted any form of movement. I only filmed flashes of colour, synchronously shot to a fragment from the very rhythmic ‘Bolero’ by Ravel’.
For this film, Bon was inspired by the music that Lou Lichtveld wrote for the Joris Ivens film Philips Radio, and by films such as Opus II, III and IV by Walter Ruttmann.
In Kleur- en vormafwisseling op ‘‘Choo-choo’ jazz, Bon’s second experiment, which he made together with Joop Huisken, he uses the same process. Bon describes it as a ‘short film, consisting of coloured shapes, and rhythmically edited to syncopated jazz music’.
Central to this experiment was the variety in colour. In Bon’s view, colour does not serve the purpose of increasing the film’s ‘reality level’, but instead serves as a ‘composition element’ for the absolute film.
These two experiments display the theories of the Filmliga as they were formulated by Menno ter Braak in his book Cinema Militants: film as a ‘dynamic-visual’ art form in which the interaction between the cinematic elements is central. The films do not represent a reality that exists beyond the film, but refer instead to nothing but the films themselves. These experiments investigate the purely formal qualities of the medium.