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Jack Goldstein

The work of Jack Goldstein (b. 1945, Montreal – d. 2003, San Bernadino) includes films, paintings, vinyl recordings and poetry. Keen to explore the representative power of the image and mass media, in the mid-1970s Goldstein worked with industry professionals to produce films employing the most advanced cinematic techniques.

Untitled is typical of his early works on canvas, which often featured warplanes in the sky or nocturnal aerial bombings. Apart from reflecting Goldstein’s fascination with film and photography, these works show the influence of minimal and conceptual art. Goldstein directed studio assistants to airbrush images that he had appropriated from various sources, often rendering images of death and destruction with exquisite beauty. They also draw attention to the augmented nature of visual perception, representing events that only technology can enable the human eye to see.

His 16 mm films, typically consist of short, repetitive and visually striking sequences. The Jump employs an old cinematographic technique known as rotoscopy to transform a film sequence into an animation. This short film retraces a dive made by an Olympic swimmer whose sparkling silhouette dissolves into fragments. Shane features a German shepherd dog who was filmed barking for three minutes. Sitting and looking directly at the camera, the animal appears to play a role, as if reciting a monologue, presumably following instructions from an inaudible voice off-camera. The dog becomes the protagonist for a short cinematic scene, the soundtrack of which also provided the material for a 7-inch record. Goldstein explained: ‘What I tried to do with the records was to break down the sounds in my films and treat the sounds as objects in themselves’. Whilst this technique of breaking down and isolating ‘objects’ to produce an image or ‘picture’ may be familiar to users of the internet, digital technology or social media, forty years ago when Shane was made, it represented an experimental break with tradition.

Artworks

  1. Jack Goldstein A Ballet Shoe, 1975

    16 mm, colour/mute, 19 s
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein Bone China, 1976

    16 mm, colour, mute, 2 min 30 sec
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein, "MGM", 1975, Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Jack Goldstein MGM, 1975

    16 mm, colour, sound, 2 min
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein Shane, 1975

    16 mm, colour, 3 min
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein Some Butterflies, 1975

    16 mm, colour/mute, 30 s
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein The Chair, 1975

    16 mm, colour/mute, 5 min
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein, "The Jump", 1978. Collection Mudam Luxembourg. Acquisition 2001
    Jack Goldstein The Jump, 1978

    16 mm, colour, mute, 13 s
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein The Knife, 1975

    16 mm, colour, mute, 4 min
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein The Portrait of Père Tanguy, 1974

    16 mm, colour, 4 min
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein "Untitled", 1981. Collection Mudam Luxembourg. Dépôt 2019 – Collection American Friends of Mudam, donation de Raymond J. Learsy
    Jack Goldstein Untitled, 1981

    Acrylique sur toile
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Dépôt 2019 – Collection American Friends of Mudam, donation de Raymond J. Learsy
    © Photo : Rémi Villaggi | Mudam Luxembourg

  1. Jack Goldstein White Dove, 1975

    16 mm, colour, 20 sec
    Collection Mudam Luxembourg
    Acquisition 2001
    © Video still : Mudam Luxembourg

Marina Abramović, "Video Portrait Gallery", 1975-1998 | Collection Mudam Luxembourg | Acquisition 2001
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