"Under An Austere Dawn"

by M.H

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A\V :: 27 :: MMXVI

"Dawn' is glimpse into a series of inquiries regarding 16mm Magnasync Moviola film equipment from 1960 which resulted in an extended intermedia installation as part of a group showing in Halifax, NS. A four foot loop of spliced celluloid, consisting of found footage trimmings harvested from the Atlantic Film CO-OP's editing bins was physically bound to the playback rate of the Moviola (which resembled a large reel-to-reel recorder except with 16mm spools and sprockets) through the use of a passive "gangsync" mechanism which tethered the multiple celluloid loops together while additional magnetic playback heads reproduced the audio signal dopplered by distance into the stereo field.

The visual loop ultimately stalled in the pinch drive and the celluloid began to melt and caught fire, bringing the audio loop with it."

Each copy included both a linear cassette and a tape-loop hand cut from the original master spool, no two loops are identical. The linear cassette documents the initial composition, recorded directly from the magnetic heads with no external processing, as well as an excerpt of the installation live in room recorded directly to tape with a marantz pmd222 and dual 57s

Housed in late 80s oversized polystyrene dual cassette cases (liquidated deadstock from a collapsing manufacturer), the tapes are accompanied by trimmings of both 16mm found footage as well as magnetic celluloid, a small insert regarding the Magnasync equipment and a colour acetate postcard with still frames of the original film loop

These were not made available for outside circulation, seeing light of day at several select performances over the summer of 16 and through personal long distance exchanges


released May 25, 2016

thank you to Solomon Nagler, Magnasync Corporation & AFCOOP NS



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