Among Warhol’s cinematic oeuvre, the black-and-white silent films are the most daring and experimental in their selection of subject and theme, psychological acuity, rhythmic pacing, and sheer beauty of form. Although these films were originally shot at sound-film speed (twenty-four frames per second), Warhol specified that prints be projected at a slower speed of sixteen frames per second, a rate used in the projection of silent films from the 1890s through the 1920s. For this exhibition, a selection of Warhol’s films made between 1963 and 1966 has been transferred from 16mm film to DVD at the speed of sixteen frames per second, and projected onto screens and monitors in a gallery setting. Thus it is again possible to see the works as Warhol intended, and to appreciate the ways in which he challenged and provoked both subject and viewer in his manipulation of moving images.
Andy Warhol. Kiss. 1963–64. 16mm film (black and white, silent). 54 min. at 16fps. © 2010 The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, PA, a museum of Carnegie Institute. All rights reserved. Film still courtesy of The Andy Warhol Museum