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Is it a book? Is it a photo-book? Or is it a film?
Andreas Schmidt's book "29.2 Seconds, Thursday 30th May 2013, 2:44 PM, Villa Lumière, Lyon" is a conundrum. The cover image of the book shows a film still from a YouTube upload (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfOV7Zuvrrc) of the same silent movie and, apart from a short explanatory text, the book only contains a single DVD onto which the film has been transferred. As the title indicates, Schmidt filmed it, situated on the main staircase at Villa Lumière in Lyon, through a window - a classic framing device used throughout the history of the medium by many photographers and filmmakers alike. In the distance we can observe nursery children on their break, running about and somewhat resembling speeded up planets orbiting around each other, almost as if we are looking at a little 29.2 second explanation of the universe.
The artist filmed this short scene a little more than 118 years after the Lumière brothers filmed their workers leaving their factory at the birthplace of cinema http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BO0EkMKfgJI with what could be considered a pretty rudimentary device, a Canon G10 Digital Compact Camera; a present-day apparatus maybe much more sophisticated but essentially not so different from the Lumière brothers' own Cinématographe, which was an all-in-one camera that also served as a film projector and developer.
In another 118 years time will anyone still be able to watch Schmidt's DVD? Will YouTube still exist? Quite possibly there will be no device left to play it on. Perhaps your grand-children or great-grand-children can show the book and tell the story.
Please contact email@example.com with your address details and proof of purchase if you have ordered the book through Blurb as it will contain no DVD.
Until the DVD arrives, you can watch the movie here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfOV7Zuvrrc
"knowingly at the opposite end of attractive publishing" Elisabeth Tonnard / artist "a prolific self-publisher exploring the very nature of books and magazines" Christopher Clary / artist "It's such a bold yet brilliant idea" Mishka Henner / artist "What a laugh!" Martin Parr / photographer / curator / supreme book collector "I'm appalled that you did this" Judy Natal / photographer "One more time you do a very clever job" Rémi Coignet / Le Monde "Andreas Schmidt brilliantly debunks the notion that expensive equals quality" Jonathan Lewis / artist "Andreas Schmidt takes the concept of the book and shakes it like a rag doll...until its head comes off. He finds truth in extremes." Jean Keller / artist "Schmidt is a master of the unexpected twist" Hatje Cantz Publishers "a superb collaborative photobook work" Harvey Benge / photographer "I'll track down your books" Alec Soth / photographer "a pleasingly disruptive photobook maker" Marc Feustel / Eyecurious