Poetic, profound and technically masterful – complex in both medium and message – the work of acclaimed Russian film-maker Andrei Tarkovsky (1932-1986) speaks eloquently and directly to a wide audience around issues central to the human condition. Increasingly, it has also become the focus of academic and artistic debate. Entering into this debate, poet and architect Kreider + O’Leary investigate the potentialities inherent in Tarkovsky’s ‘film image’ for contemporary video art, poetry and site-related practices.
Tarkovsky’s specific understanding of the film image is articulated in his collection of writings Sculpting in Time (1986) and evidenced by his film work. A vital and complex element of Tarkovksy’s cinema, and key to its uniqueness, this film image warrants exploration. Kreider + O’Leary enact this exploration through their collaborative and interdisciplinary creative practice. Taking the final three scenes of Tarkovsky’s Nostalghia (1983) as a site, they engage with those aspects of the film image that make it unique: an emphasis on time and the ‘rhythm’ of the image; the relationship between the film image and place; Tarkovsky’s signature syntax of the long take and tracking shot. They also engage with other – lesser explored – aspects including the symbolic properties of the poetic image and the material properties, design and construction of a particular location or place. The result is Gorchakov’s Wish: a video work, poem and record of creative-critical investigation.