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Out of Shot, 2013

High definition cinemascope video, duration 12m30s

Out of Shot, 2013, is a new video work by british artist Oliver Beer. The film adopts the codes of the classic Western, whilst proposing an inventive use of sound and cinematic language. A series of fixedshot tableaux shows beautiful, saturated imagery of mountainous Western iconography. By means of an unorthodox cinematic approach, all of the principal actions seem to happen elsewhere. What we see is a reaction to something happening out of shot, the presence of which is indicated by sophisticated foley composition. Indeed no single sound in the film was recorded on set; all of the sound has been composed and sychronised in the studio.



The Korean cowboy protagonist, who we see in the interviews which punctuate the film, recounts what seem to be thematically parallel anecdotes, whose relevance gradually informs the cinematic material. Little by little, we realise that all is not what it seems in this film, as the sound is isolated from the image, and the language from the speaker.



Likening cinematic sound to the structures and intellectual complexity of classical composition, the film evokes the depth and intricacy that can be coded into a sound track. It also begins to deconstruct what theorist and composer Michel Chion refers to as Audiovision – that sixth sense that we inescapably experience with the fusion of sound and image in cinéma. 


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Produced with the support of the Palais de Tokyo. 

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