STK-ID 77962

FI16734.002 THE MCLAREN PASTELS 35mm negative In 1939, Norman McLaren emigrated to the USA. He became connected to Museum of Non-objective Painting (now the Guggenheim). Hilla von Rebay, its curator, had many young artists under her wing (including Jackson Pollock) to whom she gave a weekly stipend – sometimes, as in the case of McLaren, in return for services. McLaren built a projection booth and ran screenings of films, usually experimental and “non-objective”. Von Rebay also bought Norman’s early films for the museum. Norman had an idea for what we would now call video-art installations. He wrote a proposal, illustrating it with small pastels. His idea was to build rear-projections screens in the walls, screens of differing shapes, which would show, looped, short abstract films. Sadly, this innovative idea went nowhere. I (Don McWilliams) took these pastels and shot them on the animation stand (Robert Forget’s French animation studio paid for that). I had an (unachieved) idea of making a film out of them and on the Optical camera/printer putting the moving images into different shaped frames.


Excerpt from
Norman McLaren's Archives and Personal Files
McLaren Collection