lighting design

exhibition at mint

The exhibition Third Eye Butterfly brings together an extraordinary range of artistic voices working at the intersection of language, music and film including Nat Marcus, Luzie Meyer, Sofia Restorp and P Staff, to expand on the work of American filmmaker Storm de Hirsch (1912–2000), who is considered one of the key figures of the 1960s New York avant-garde scene. De Hirsch, who’s artistic contribution remains largely overlooked within an institutional context, began her artistic career as a poet, and developed her film based practice through her understanding of language. Her work is strongly influenced by an interest in mysticism and occult practices, which is reflected in her exploration of analogue effects. Distinctive to her work is also the rhythmic interplay between image and sound.

The film Third Eye Butterfly (1968) which lends the exhibition its title, is a result of multiple visual experiments inspired by the diverse range of colorful and abstract butterfly wing patterns. Kaleidoscopic shots and superimpositions come and go in the image, in tune with the soundtrack’s repetitive scheme, it appears as an attempt to translate the multi-color effect of butterfly wings into an expanded film experience. Intended to be projected on a double screen using two synchronized projectors, the film creates the illusion of seeing two butterfly wings animated by the flicker of the projected images. An eye, “the great Eye,” appears several times in the center of an endless spiral framed by the words “Third Eye Butterfly.” On this matter, the American theorist Casey Chanress explains that “the 70mm like effect of Third Eye Butterfly encourages the mind to work as a third eye by fusing the two side-by-side screens into a third meaning, just as Eisenstein caused the meaning of two juxtaposed shots to result in a third implied meaning.”

pictures: Johan Osterholm