Sunday, October 01, 2006

Group Project: Example

A reminder that criteria for the Group Project are posted in the syllabus. There is an open variety of creative options for the form in which you will present your Field School work: portfolio, blog, video, &c., &c. Your project requires the Instructor's written approval on a one-page outline of your plans -- I suggest you do this initial approval stage sooner rather than later.

I had an example to bring to Tuesday's class for your Group Projects, but this Saturday's Vancouver Sun gives me one much better. Their "Arts and Life" section has not so much an article on as a hagiography of filmaker Norman McLaren. (This post's title is a hotlink to the online version.)
The Sun writer all but declares that McLaren, who was born and raised in Glasgow, essentially created modern Canadian identity. For example:
Though reluctant to carry the burden of the national identity on his shoulders, through work such as Spheres (set to the music of Glenn Gould's Goldberg Variations by Bach) and Neighbours, McLaren's Academy-Award-winning stop-motion short about two men who end up killing each other over a flower, McLaren nonetheless projected the image of Canada as a creative, experimental and above all, socially conscious place to live.
So, assuming McLaren were the subject of study, the project would be to find the best means of showing how characteristics of Scottish identity contributed to those features of his art -- his contribution to Canadian society -- that become Canadian.
For an NFB précis of McLaren, click here.

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