Message 188: Le Retour à la raison

I have set Man Ray’s 1923 silent film Le Retour à la raison [UPDATE: UbuWeb is temporarily offline] to “Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors”: here.

Man Ray’s film is available at UbuWeb. Some commentary: “The early segments of the film illustrate a technique which Man Ray pioneered in static photography, the rayograph (or photogramme). Here, an object is placed between a light source and photo-sensitive film, in contrast to traditional photography where photographic film captures light reflected off an object. For Le Retour à la raison, Man Ray sought to extend the rayograph technique to a moving image. He sprinkled salt and pepper on one piece of film, pins on another, illuminated the film for a few seconds, then developed the film.”

There is a Wikipedia entry on Man Ray as well as information on a past exhibit at the International Center for Photography.

3 replies on “Message 188: Le Retour à la raison”

Thanks for mentioning Karp’s book. I hadn’t seen that. Do you know much about the book? Apparently Karp was a screenwriter: I’ve found snippets of information about him and the book online, but not much. Powells here in Portland has a few used copies for sale–I may try to pick one up. Other books I’ve not mentioned on is Eco’s Bandolino and Abbey’s The Monkey Wrench Gang.

No, I’m not familiar with the book itself. Unfortunately, I live in a stuffy Chicagoan suburb with no used book stores (and no driver’s lisence. Oi). However, because the quote’s directly linked from a previous version of that was developed around the time Amnesiac came out (, it may be safe to assume it in some ways influenced that particular album. That’s just a hunch. I can’t logically conclude anything because I’ve not read the book. I hope to soon.

Thanks for the other book recommendations, I’ll be sure to give them a look.

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