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glass & zoo

Surprisingly little of the work of Bert Haanstra, the old Dutch master of poetic documentaries, is available online. There is a collected works DVD box, but why isn't there a website showing - at least - his shorter work? From their descriptions they all sound very interesting, films like 'Panta Rhei', 'Rembrandt, Painter of Man', 'Cité Idéale' (his collaboration with Lewis Mumford) or even his commissioned work for Shell.

Fortunately, two of his short documentary gems show up on youTube: 'Glass' (1958) and 'Zoo' (1961; cut up in two parts).

Both are awesome examples of a genre that hardly exists anymore: the wordless documentary, using purely visual observation, in this case perfectly edited to a jazzy score. The former makes glass blowers look like jazz musicians, and in the latter the difference between zoo visitors and residents is comically blurred...


begone dull care

As a tribute to Oscar Peterson , here's a unique vizualisation of his legendary piano work: an abstract animation called ' Begone Dull Care ' (1949) by experimental filmmaker Norman McLaren . Synchronized to three pieces by the Oscar Pe… Read the full post »

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