Film Work of Norman McLaren

Overview

The Film Work of Norman McLaren examines his films in the context of his objectives. The first part deals with McLaren’s formative years in Scotland and England and examines his early exposure to the social, artistic, and institutional influences that were to shape his filmic output. The second part deals with McLaren’s maturation in the USA and Canada. The third part is concerned principally with his mature output. McLaren’s films contain incongruities, conflicts, and apparent inconsistencies. In exploring these...

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Overview

The Film Work of Norman McLaren examines his films in the context of his objectives. The first part deals with McLaren’s formative years in Scotland and England and examines his early exposure to the social, artistic, and institutional influences that were to shape his filmic output. The second part deals with McLaren’s maturation in the USA and Canada. The third part is concerned principally with his mature output. McLaren’s films contain incongruities, conflicts, and apparent inconsistencies. In exploring these aspects of his work, Terence Dobson examines the technical processes McLaren used in making his films, the oscillation shown in his films between abstract and representational imagery, and the degree of accord between McLaren’s social and artistic objectives, and his filmic achievements.

John Libbey Publishing

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Editorial Reviews

Choice

"... This handsome, classy book should prove an indispensable companion to the DVD boxed set of McLaren's work (Norman McLaren, the Master's Edition, 2006). Both pay overdue attention to a brilliant, distinctive innovator who balanced the antithetic passions of social concern and abstract art.... Highly recommended." —Choice

M. Yacowar

At last, a full study of McLaren (1914-87), a brilliant pioneer in film animation. Building on Don McWilliam's valuable and extensive work, Dobson (Univ. of Canterbury, New Zealand) weaves insightful analysis, both thematic and technical, with McLaren's drawings and scads of material from personal correspondence and interviews. He is especially adroit on the rare early films--for example, Hell Unlimited (1936), a precursor to his classic Neighbours (1952)--and their roots in McLaren's reading and in his wide engagement in the arts. Dobson devotes separate chapters to McLaren's student days, his time with the GPO Film Unit in the UK, and his New York period before digging into his years at Canada's National Film Board (1941-84). The section on his technical experiments is clear and well illustrated. This handsome, classy book should prove an indispensable companion to the DVD boxed set of McLaren's work (Norman McLaren, the Master's Edition, 2006). Both pay overdue attention to a brilliant, distinctive innovator who balanced the antithetic passions of social concern and abstract art. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers; all levels. -- ChoiceM. Yacowar, formerly, University of Calgary, Jan 2008

Choice

"... This handsome, classy book should prove an indispensable companion to the DVD boxed set of McLaren's work (Norman McLaren, the Master's Edition, 2006). Both pay overdue attention to a brilliant, distinctive innovator who balanced the antithetic passions of social concern and abstract art.... Highly recommended." —Choice

From the Publisher
At last, a full study of McLaren (1914-87), a brilliant pioneer in film animation. Building on Don McWilliam's valuable and extensive work, Dobson (Univ. of Canterbury, New Zealand) weaves insightful analysis, both thematic and technical, with McLaren's drawings and scads of material from personal correspondence and interviews. He is especially adroit on the rare early films—for example, Hell Unlimited (1936), a precursor to his classic Neighbours (1952)—and their roots in McLaren's reading and in his wide engagement in the arts. Dobson devotes separate chapters to McLaren's student days, his time with the GPO Film Unit in the UK, and his New York period before digging into his years at Canada's National Film Board (1941-84). The section on his technical experiments is clear and well illustrated. This handsome, classy book should prove an indispensable companion to the DVD boxed set of McLaren's work (Norman McLaren, the Master's Edition, 2006). Both pay overdue attention to a brilliant, distinctive innovator who balanced the antithetic passions of social concern and abstract art. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers; all levels. — ChoiceM. Yacowar, formerly, University of Calgary, Jan 2008

"... This handsome, classy book should prove an indispensable companion to the DVD boxed set of McLaren's work (Norman McLaren, the Master's Edition, 2006). Both pay overdue attention to a brilliant, distinctive innovator who balanced the antithetic passions of social concern and abstract art.... Highly recommended." —Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780861966561
  • Publisher: Indiana University Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2006
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Terence Dobson teaches film animation in the Department of Theatre and Film Studies at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

John Libbey Publishing

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Table of Contents

Part One

Chapter One – An Informative Drawing
Chapter Two – The Early Years
Chapter Three – McLaren at the GPO Film Unit

Part Two

Chapter Four – New York Interlude
Chapter Five – Canada

Part Three

Chapter Six – Technical Processes
Chapter Seven – Confluence and Conflict in Synchromy
Chapter Eight– Venus and Mars

Conclusion
Norman McLaren’s Chronology
Bibliography
Interviews, Films and Recordings

John Libbey Publishing

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