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Luther Price: Gar Har Clown

Clowns don’t scare me the way they do some people. But … this clown? The snorting, drooling one in the above embedded short film by Luther Price? He absolutely terrifies me. It’s a very simple, sadly disturbing piece of work.

I fell in love with this thing instantly because of its sheer oddness. It’s cold, it’s desolate. It appears less of an acting job and more like a cry for help. Although, I’m aware that’s the statement the artist is trying to put out there. But, I really fell in love with this little beauty because if you film something in Super-8, leave the occasional, obvious splice mark in and upload it online — well, that’s what’s going to happen. I can’t help myself.

Clown snarls into camera and makes snooty hand gesture

I love that tactile sensation you get from seeing the splice marks and magnified projector dust from film. For me, it gives a project more weight, especially after its been digitized into a format that favors the slick uploading from video cameras and cell phones. It’s makes the action captured on film more real.

Unfortunately, I’m not all that familiar with the work of Luther Price, who specializes in filming in Super 8. He has a few more samples of his own work uploaded to YouTube. And if you want more background on him, this Bright Lights Film Journal article has some great info.

(Film still from Light Industry)


Underground Film Feedback (3 comments)

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  • luther price says:

    hey, thanx,……….hope to scare you more…………..but thats not what i am trying for ………….i created the gar har clown while working at the gardner museum in boston………during the early to mid 90’s as the host for the caffe’………….everyone needed and wanted something special …so i decided to give it to them………..i became gar har the clown host……………they didn’t even notice that it was all so……………they just wanted the best tble or right in the garden……………all i said was gar har to them with hand jestures ………….they thought it was high class french……………gar har ,,luther price

  • John says:

    Luther, I’d love to see this film again. Is there any way I can view it. I have missed it for years.

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