Grounded at Ardmore
- from The Futurist Manifesto, 1909, and an additional statement by Marinetti, 1912
That ordinary midweek Ardmore winter night,
air-to-air combat film, all camera gun stuff,
no sound of course, no commentary,
just one clip spliced on to another,
Name of pilot, date, Type of (target) aircraft.
Poor quality film, visibility impaired.
When fire was opened synchronised camera jumped
spastically. studio simulation does the job
An ME 109 came into sight,
pursued through evasive tactics making use
of cloud. He knew he’d someone on his tail
before the screen began to jump,
In cloud, and out, swung
then pulled back climbing on a curve
off-screen. Which steadied, like a postulate.
Held, a moment long enough, you felt
a prediction coming true, it came
from top right headed lower left,
dead on course to centre screen
which jumped again, erupted. That was
People talk about inevitability
of the work of art. This was
inevitable, purpose purely stated,
then complete. A kinetic art,
like ballet? Language as gesture?
the huntsman, not aware beforehand, was
in the audience. He had to take a lot of barracking.
"Come on," he protested, "lay off, eh. It’s a bit
blush-making, isn’t it? It’s not like rhubarb."
Rhubarb was then a technical term.
- from Kendrick Smithyman's 'Silent Movies'