by Katy Martin
1978, 19 minutes, digital transfer (from super 8mm film original)
with sound by Richard Teitelbaum
— FILM PRESERVATION in 2015 by Anthology Film Archives
— DIGITAL RESTORATION in 2019 by BB Optics - new!
SILKSCREENS follows the choreography of printmakers at work, pulling the edition of Johns' print, THE DUTCH WIVES. It was filmed at Simca Print Artists in New York. I got the notion of repetitive labor as a form of dance from the French painter, Edgar Degas. No doubt, I was also influenced by minimalism (for example, the work of Yvonne Rainer, Jackie Winsor and Vito Acconci) with its impetus to integrate work and ordinary movements and materials into fine art. For the sound track, I worked with the musician, Richard Teitelbaum (who in turn had worked with John Cage). We used ambient sounds from the print shop and the street outside to reflect the kind of hearing that you experience as you work, when sounds float in and out of consciousness. The artist, Jasper Johns, does not appear in this film. My next film, HANAFUDA, focused on Johns at work with the printers at Simca.