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Soliloquy

Stephen Dwoskin

USA, 1964 - 1967
8 minutes, B&W, Opt., 4:3
Original format: 16mm Film
Available formats: 16mm / HD Digital File

If its predecessors among Stephen Dwoskin’s work are pre-eminently films of women’s faces, Soliloquy is made up of eyes, lips, hair, fingers, fabrics. The tactility that is present in his other films of this period is to the fore here. The face was credited to Joan Adler, the voice to Leena Komppa. Joan Adler, a work colleague of Dwoskin’s in New York, had been his entrée to the downtown underground, and wrote a remarkable foreword evoking the scene for his 1975 book Film Is.

The narration was inspired by Molly Bloom’s soliloquy from James Joyce’s Ulysses – also the inspiration for Dwoskin’s first feature Times For. Leena Komppa, who wrote and performed it, was a photography student, and Dwoskin’s girlfriend at the time. – Henry K. Miller

‘In Soliloquy a girl broods uncertainly over a failed love affair, while the camera roves over her fingers, her cigarette, her knuckles, her lips and the handmirror in which she peers. In its dark reflection one isolated eye seems a dead thing, twitching; the split between her body and her spoken thoughts becomes a strange bilocation of consciousness; towards the end, an aeroplane drones overhead.’ – Raymond Durgnat