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21 min. silent.

An innovator and avid researcher in the field of cinematic time and depth-perception throughout his avant-garde filmmaking career, Ken Jacobs has, in recent years, embraced the possibilities of digital cinema to further his visual investigations. His series of “Eternalisms” compiles short, snapshot-like situations, often captured within the immediate vicinity of Jacobs’s home in New York City using a process that makes three-dimensional perception possible on a 2D-screen without 3D-glasses… and with one eye closed.
Shelley Duvall is Olive Oyl is the fourth in a series of shorts beginning with Popeye Sees 3D […]. We’re crazy about both the original Popeye and the Altman film but the point in evoking the one-eyed sailor was to bring attention to single-eye depth perception. The Eternalism is my name for moving screen-images that not only appear in depth on 2D monitors but can continue in place with no start and no repeat point forever, defying time as we know it but also with their impossible depths available to even a single eye. Time’n’space time’n’space, transformed by cinema! The unthinkable available as the new electronic greeting card.” (Ken Jacobs)

Ken Jacobs was born in 1933 in New York, USA. He studied painting with Hans Hofmann from 1956 to 1957. He started making films in 1955. In 1966, Jacobs founded the Millennium Film Workshop, of which he was the director until 1968. A year later he started the Department of Cinema at the State University of New York in Binghamton. He taught there from 1974 until his retirement in 2000. Along with teaching cinema, he has made a number of experimental films and videos, which have been shown worldwide. In addition, he has presented a series of film performances under the names “The Nervous System” since the mid 1970s and “The Nervous Magic Lantern” since 2000.

Production company Ken Jacobs (New York, USA). Director Ken Jacobs. Director of photography Ken Jacobs. Editing Ken Jacobs.


1955: Orchard Street (12 min., forum expanded 2015). 1959: Star Spangled to Death. 1963: The Whirled (27 min.). 1960: Little Stabs at Happiness (18 min.). 1963: Blonde Cobra (30 min.), Baud’larian Capers (25 min.). 1964: Window (12 min.), The Winter Footage (50 min.). 1967: Air Shaft (4 min.). 1968: Soft Rain (12 min.), Nissan Ariana Window (15 min.). 1969: Tom, Tom the Piper’s Son (115 min.), Globe (22 min.). 1975: Urban Peasants (50 min.). 1978: The Doctor’s Dream (27 min.). 1985: Perfect Film (27 min.), The Winter Footage (50 min.). 1990: Opening the Nineteenth Century: 1896 (11 min.). 1991: Keaton’s Cops (23 min.). 1995: The Georgetown Loop (11 min.), Disorient Express (30 min.). 1999: Flo Rounds a Corner (6 min.). 2002: A Tom Tom Chaser (10 min.), Circling Zero: Part One, We See Absence (114 min.). 2003: Keeping an Eye on Stan (117 min.), Capitalism: Slavery (3 min.). 2004: Celestial Subway Lines/Salvaging Noise (108 min.), Mountaineer Spinning (26 min.), Star Spangled to Death (420 min.). 2006: New York Ghetto Fishmarket 1903 (132 min.). 2007: Let There Be Whistleblowers (18 min., forum expanded 2007), Razzle Dazzle (The Lost World) (92 min.), Capitalism: Child Labor (14 min.), Anaglyph Tom (Tom with Puffy Cheeks) (108 min.). 2009: What Happened on 23rd Street in 1901 (14 min.). 2011: Seeking the Monkey King (39 min., forum expanded 2012). 2012: Street Vendor (6 min.), Cyclopean 3D Life with a Beautiful Woman (47 min.), Blankets for Indians 3D (57 min.). 2013: A Primer in Sky Socialism (58 min., forum expanded 2014), Joys of Waiting for the Broadway Bus (180 min.), The Guests (73 min., forum 2014). 2014: Pygmalion Cubed (100 min.), Canopy (4 min.), Cyclops Observes the Celestial Bodies (15 min., forum expanded 2015). 2016: Popeye Sees 3D (21 min., forum expanded 2017), Ulysses in the Subway (59 Min., Forum Expanded 2017, with Flo Jacobs, Marc Downie, and Paul Kaiser). 2017: Shelley Duvall is Olive Oyl.

Photo: © Ken Jacobs

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
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