BEHIND THE SCENE
What: Time-lapse footage of the Seaport building boom in the video installation “No Planes, No Trains . . . Just Cranes.”
Where: Boston Children’s Museum, through May 15. Museum admission: $16, 617-426-6500, www.bostonchildrensmuseum.org
The slow, steady business of the cranes outside Andrew Neumann’s window sounds so much more interesting the way he describes it.
“We all know the Flintstones had a dinosaur that lifted up things for them, so I treat these cranes as if they were man-made dinosaurs,” Neumann says. “Their one specific function is to lift steel up into the air, like living, breathing machines that shoot up into the sky.”
Neumann, local filmmaker, artist, and Guggenheim fellow, sat his Canon on the sill and shot the beasts over the course of about three years, capturing in high speed the Seaport’s bloom of steel and glass from the window of his Fort Point studio. The result, besides more footage than he has plans for, is a five-piece time-lapse video installation at the nearby Boston Children’s Museum, “No Planes, No Trains . . . Just Cranes.”
“Although the camera may be on all day long, it’s only capturing about 20 seconds of video, because I’m taking a frame every minute, as opposed to 30 frames a second,” Neumann says. “It depends on my mood, and some of it’s just pure experiment.”
Though Neumann has been able to use the footage for other projects, the Children’s Museum exhibit specifically uses five looping feeds — two projectors and three monitors — of everything from storm cycles to freaky crane shapes made in post-production, all using the same crane footage from the same studio window. The work is meant to mesmerize the young and old, Neumann says, but it’s not without its deeper meaning, even for video of construction.
“It’s also about the evolving neighborhood that had sat dormant for so many years, before all of a sudden this building boom started five years ago,” he says. “So it’s almost like a diary video of what’s progressed over the years, from one angle from one window.”
Now that the boom is moving out of view, taking the cranes with it, Neumann sees himself closing up the camera sometime soon. That doesn’t mean there’s not more left to build with the materials he already has, though.
“I keep coming across such gold, such beautiful footage, that I’m just remolding it, as if I were working with clay,” he says. “Eventually I’ll put it to rest. Eventually.”
In the Cabinet-level post, Elliott-Ortega will focus on increasing diversity in the arts and seeking funding for the local arts community.Continue reading »
Lana Del Rey, Azealia Banks, Iggy Azalea put spats in the spotlight.Continue reading »
The casting of non-Latino actors in the lead roles has opened another front in an increasingly heated national debate over onstage diversity.Continue reading »
The actor from Winchester passed on a chance to understudy in the original production of “Hamilton,” but now he has no regrets.Continue reading »
When villain V.M. Varga reaches inside his grotesque mouth and starts picking and poking, I have to watch through my fingers.Continue reading »
The movie, which asks the men behind mass killings in Indonesia to show their own version of events, is one of the most extraordinary films you’ll ever encounter.Continue reading »
The two-part, four-hour film, airing Saturday and Sunday nights, is a deep dive into the life and death of the former Patriot and convicted murderer.Continue reading »
The emotionally powerful, potentially controversial new film “Calvary” is written and directed by John Michael McDonagh.Continue reading »
We don’t mean strict video game adaptations. Far more fascinating are films wherein video games play a major role in the plot.Continue reading »