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UAL Research Online

Narrative Duration: Tacita Dean's Disappearance at Sea

Walsh, Maria (2004) Narrative Duration: Tacita Dean's Disappearance at Sea. In: Reading Images and Seeing Words. Rodopi, Amsterdam; New York, pp. 57-69. ISBN 9789042017719

Type of Research: Book Section
Creators: Walsh, Maria

In this book chapter, the result of an earlier conference paper, I address the narrational qualities of Tacita Dean's 14-minute film of a lighthouse, Disappearance at Sea, 1996. The film is obliquely inspired by the real-life story of Donald Crowhurst who attempted to sail around the world single-handedly in the Golden Globe race of 1968. The film does not recount this narrative, but presents condensed moments inspired by it. The film's use of a series of static camera shots: close-ups of the revolving lighthouse lamp; long-shots of a sunset on the horizon; and a final cut to the blank screen generate another form of narration, one that follows images in terms of their spatio-temporal resonances. I explore the narrational configuration of this trajectory using philosopher Gilles Deleuze's concept of time-image narration, film theorist Gilberto Perez' notion of narrative as a cumulative arrangement of shots, and philosopher David Carr's phenomenological emphasis on the narrational aspects of prethematic experience, i.e. experiential components that are not yet ordered into narrative, but nonetheless inform it and affect the perceptual body.

Official Website: http://www.rodopi.nl/senj.asp?BookId=FAUX+245
Additional Information (Publicly available):

This chapter is one of the first pieces of work I did exploring the relation between narrational affectivity and the spectator. In the book introduction, my chapter is described:

“Maria Walsh proposes that […] Dean's film [produces] a liberating feeling of continuity instead of closure. It creates its own sense of time and space with a distinct flow, whether measured or not. The audience forms a reactive view of shots presented not so much as one action after another, but as indicators of the intensification of time belonging to both humans and the cosmos” (Rosalind Silvester and Alan English, 5).

Publisher/Broadcaster/Company: Rodopi
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Chelsea College of Arts
Date: 2004
Date Deposited: 07 Dec 2009 12:57
Last Modified: 19 Aug 2014 16:11
Item ID: 799
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/799

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