Blind Spot
TitleBlind Spot
DirectorClaudia Von Alemann
CountryGermany
Year1980
Duration1hr 51mins
Format16mm, Vhs video, Umatic video
DescriptionClaudia von Alemann's feature-length film, BLIND SPOT, is about an historian who is researching the life of Flora Tristan, a 19th century socialist and feminist rarely mentioned in conventional history books. The historian, Elisabeth, decides to abandon traditional desk-bound study and, leaving behind her family, visits Lyon where Tristan herself had worked. In her search for an active way to remember and understand the past and how it affects her as a woman, Elisabeth discovers a path with 'sound' - first through her violin whose notes have been heard by different generations for 200 years; then through the sounds she tape-records (water, footsteps, voices) whose likeness might have been heard by Tristan a century before. The collective memory of these sounds becomes in turn a bridge to Elisabeth's future. 'Remembering is largely effected acoustically. I have tried to make a sound film - in which sound is neither a mere background nor the means by which an illusion of authenticity is induced. Just as one can speak of 'subjective camera', I would like to speak of 'subjective microphone'. (Claudia von Alemann - The Woman with the Camera, ed. Renate Mohrmann) 'A film about the impossibility of knowing the past, the camera looks and looks but only yields implacably closed images. Sound's the thing, and in the final, long-held shot of a woman ecstatically playing her violin, the film's complex and compelling themes come together. A rigorous and beautiful film'. (Jane Clarke, Time Out)