In 1968, Arts Magazine ran a piece by Mel Bochner entitled "Alfaville, Godard's Apocalypse". Far from being a straightforward synopsis and critique of the French-Swiss directorís film, Bochner's article takes the form of a complex composition of quotes and comments, excerpts and stills from the film, broken up into multiple boxes on the pages of the magazine. It is not merely an account of Jean-Luc Godardís reception in 1960s America, for it also attests to the assimilation of formal structures and ideological (more than political) questions at the core of his cinematographic practice.
Picking up where Bochnerís unique and yet representative piece left off, the fifth issue of (SIC) explores Godardís reception in the US art scene from 1965 to the 1990s. Godard's cinema seems to have exerted an exceptional and enduring power of attraction on a number of his contemporaries there, from Lawrence Weiner to Martha Rosler and Susan Sontag. While fleshing out the historical, aesthetic and ideological context of this reception, the essays also look at how Godard's films found food for thought in the practice of many American artists and intellectuals.
Sylvie Eyberg, for her part, provides subtle visual responses to the essays. Using cropped and reframed shots from Godard's films and playfully arranging her images to impinge on the borders and margins of the pages, the artist creates a free-form visual commentary running through the whole review. Its "silence" offers a different take on Godard's oeuvre.
Editors: Olivier Mignon and RaphaŽl Pirenne
Essays by Antoine de Baecque, Mel Bochner, Eric de Bruyn, Larisa Dryansky, David Evans, Olivier Mignon and RaphaŽl Pirenne, Jonathan Rosenbaum, Susan Sontag, Martha Rosler and Lawrence Weiner
Art intervention by Sylvie Eyberg
Published in 2012
23.5 x 31 cm