Strings (1980)

8 Mar
Director Ken O’Connell
Producer Eugene OR, Ken O’Connell. Champaign IL, Picture Start.
Contributors Picture Start
Length 3 minutes
B&W/Color B&W
UO Library Catalog description: An abstract view of scale and light.
Call # Ma207
Genre Experimental Films, Short Films United States
Rare Yes
Online No
Copyright status ©1979 Ken O’Connell
Physical condition Fair
Oregon-related Yes

Notes: Strings is a short experimental/art film made by Ken O’Connell. It is essentially an abstract set of visuals that explores various views of scale and light, just as the UO catalog describes. It is extremely short and was made principally to be shown as part of an exhibit or at film festivals. Strings won 3rd place at the USA Film Festival in Dallas, Texas in 1980. The film was made in the early 1970’s, but not edited and released until 1979.

The film is unique to the University of Oregon. As far as I know we are the only institution to have a copy of it both in digital and 16mm form. O’Connell is a retired professor who still teaches at the U of O in the Art Department. I myself have taken a few sketching and drawing classes with him, but was unaware his work within film up until now. He has made over 16 short films in his career, many of which can be accessed from the UO libraries on VHS or digitally. I contacted O’Connell about Strings and as far as he knows, there are only five 16mm copies in existence. For a sampling of some of his other work, check out another short film he did called Chips In Space, which is a video produced in 1984 on the Apple II with Vectrix graphics hardware. The animations were produced by rendering and capturing the image frame-by-frame onto 16mm film. O’Connell shot all of his films on 16mm. His last film, Oregon Country, was transferred to video in the final printing so it was released on video only in a collection called Greentunes.

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