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Blind Date with Nitrate
Sunday, May 7, 2017 @ 16:00–18:00$20
Language is the primary tool we use to communicate about cinema, but it is not cinema itself. We use language to contextualize the cinematic experience, to talk about the themes and content of film, to relate the emotional journey we've undergone through cinema. We use language to entice others to interact with particular pieces of cinematic art, to make it as exciting as possible before they have seen a frame of the film itself. But language is not cinema; it is a poor substitute. Cinema is expression through images, and the purest cinematic experiences retain certain indelible qualities that language is unable to adequately capture. Cinema is immersive, both visually and aurally; cinema is immediate in that it cannot be interrupted, nor encountered in the same way at another time; cinema is communal, shared among like-minded individuals. It is a unique experience in and of itself, a moment in time remembered but never recaptured. So what if we pared away the language about cinema and left only the language of cinema? Throughout this catalogue we have taken great pains to let the condition and provenance of the films speak for themselves, knowing that a print's background and care have a profound effect on its exhibition. In addition, we have added contemporaneous commentary, trading present-day interpretation in favor of immediate reactions at the time of the film's release. The Blind Date with Nitrate is our ultimate achievement in this endeavor. We offer no context other than a solitary image, a frame enlargement from the print itself. There is no language of enticement, no words to stand between you and the complete mystery of cinema. We offer instead an invitation—an invitation to communicate with cinema in your own way, free of context and expectation. We invite you to a singular immediate, immersive, and communal exhibition, with the hope of creating for you a cinematic moment that you will never forget.
[source: George Eastman Museum calendar, 2017-May-5]