Home Architect Kenneth Anger (1927-2023) – Artforum International

Kenneth Anger (1927-2023) – Artforum International

by godlove4241
0 comment

Groundbreaking experimental filmmaker Kenneth Anger, whose surreal homoerotic short films continue to exert a profound influence on contemporary culture, died on May 11 at the age of ninety-six. His death, in an assisted living facility in Yucca Valley, California, was announced by the Sprüth Magers gallery, which represents him. In addition to his film work, Anger, who was also an actor, artist and author, was widely known for the best-selling Hollywood Babylon, a jaw-dropping compendium of second-hand gossip centered around the brightest movie stars of the early 20th century. Instrumental in the development of experimental giants as disparate as Stan Brakhage and David Lynch, Anger’s work directly presaged MTV in its marriage of popular music with vibrant, moving imagery. “While his movies. . . defied Hollywood practice and themes, they also penetrated directly into the shimmering, illuminated moving images that underpin the Dream Factory,” Tom Gunning wrote in a 2007 issue of art forum. “Her diversion Hollywood tropes helped Pop art emerge from the biting, affectionate irony that defined American gay camp culture.

Kenneth Anger was born Kenneth Anglemyer on February 3, 1927, the youngest of three children in a middle-class Presbyterian family led by an electrical engineer father at Douglas Aircraft. Coming late to the scene compared to his siblings, Anger struggled with his family life from an early age. “My siblings hated me because I was the artist,” he said The Guardian in 2013. “I had a bitchy older sister, Jean, who identified me not by Kenneth but by BCA-Birth Control Accident.” The young Kenneth’s grandmother introduced him to the cinema and he made his first film in 1937 at the age of ten, using 16mm scrap left over from a family vacation.

In 1947, after leaving the family home and changing his name, Anger made the first of nine films that would come to be known collectively as the Magick Lantern Cycle (1947-1972), the incendiary Fireworks. The 14-minute short – in which he is beaten by a group of sailors, one of whom undoes his own pants to reveal a lit Roman candle – won him the attention of sex therapist Alfred Kinsey, and the couple struck up a lasting friendship. Ten years after, Fireworks would feature in a landmark California Supreme Court decision, after distributor Raymond Rohauer was charged with obscenity for showing the film at a Los Angeles movie theatre. The court ruled that homosexuality was a reasonable subject of artistic expression and called Fireworks a work of art rather than a work of pornography.

Constantly plagued by a lack of funds, Anger produced work at a hesitant speed, often beginning ambitious projects and then truncating them as circumstances dictated. “I had to fit my dreams into my budgets,” he told Harmony Korine in a 2014 issue of Interview. Moment chipof 1949, for example, was inaugurated under the title Smart Woman, and instead of showing various Hollywood silent film goddesses in their homes, Anger’s cousin Yvonne Marquis played such a creature. Other films remained completely unreleased, including those of 1949 The love that swirlswhich was destroyed by lab technicians displeased with its naked depictions of Aztec sacrifice.

Among Anger’s best-known films, besides Fireworksare the others that make up the Magick Lantern Cycle, among them Inauguration of the Dome of Pleasure (1954). The film saw Anger, who maintained a lifelong interest in Satanism, exploring Thelema, the occult spiritual philosophy founded by Aleister Crowley. Scorpio Rise (1963), which sets the hellish activities of a group of leather-clad motorcyclists to a rich soundtrack by then-current artists including the Angels, Ricky Nelson, Elvis Presley and Bobby Vinton, formed the template for the music videos. which will populate MTV twenty years later. As Fireworks, he dropped an obscenity charge, this one for Los Angeles Cinema Theater manager Michael Getz. Getz was found guilty but successfully appealed. Summon My Demon Brother (1969) starred Mick Jagger, Church of Satan founder Anton LaVey, and Manson Family member Bobby Beausoleil; this film would have been made from the offcuts of Lucifer Ascendant. Starring Marianne Faithfull and technically completed in 1972, the film did not see wide release until 1980, due to the delay of Beausoleil, then imprisoned for the murder of Gary Hinman, in delivering the soundtrack.

Having written the original Hollywood Babylon in 1959 out of a desperate need to make money, Anger returned to the pit in 1984 with Hollywood Babylon II. While the original volume was originally published in France and banned in the United States for more than a decade, due to its sinister content, Anger alleged that Walt Disney was addicted to opiates and movie idol Rudolph Valentino. liked to replace dominant women. – the sequel had no such problems and was happily received. Anger said he created a third volume at the time of his death, but was shelved due to a juicy chapter centered on Tom Cruise and Scientology.

Although he abandoned cinema in the latter part of the 20th century, Anger in the 2000s had started making short films again, among which patriotic penis (2004), which featured Mickey Mouse memorabilia shots from the 1920s and 1930s over a contemporary jazz soundtrack, and a brief music video for Missoni in 2010, which Artnet described as “notably light on the grain”.

Anger was optimistic about the prospect of his own death. “Either it’s just a black curtain. . . I mean, life is interesting enough,” he told Korine. “You don’t need anything afterwards. It would be nice if there was – almost every culture imagines some kind of paradise, but that might just be wishful thinking. So, to counter the sky, they imagined a hell. And often the hell is more interesting.


You may also like

Leave a Comment

@2022 – All Right Reserved. Designed and Developed by artworlddaily