HOMELESS NEW YORK 1990

by Hans SCHEUGL
1993-2013 / 16mm / color / sound / 1S / 17' 30

Homeless New York 1990 is a digital recut of the two 16mm-films Black/White made in 1990.
The new version refers to the continuous urgency of what had started to become visible in the late 1980s in American cities - New York in particular: homelessness, drug dealing, crime, anger and violence.
Homeless - just like the original material - is a documentary as well as a metafilm that comments its making. Scheugl's background as a formal filmmaker plays a significant role.
The man at the beginning of the film, picking up beer cans and bottles, agreed to be filmed when he gets payed. Scheugl gave him some dollars and tells of it in his film, breaking a taboo of documentary film. The homeless man becomes a payed actor and Scheugl an observer who intervenes on the scene in front of the camera.

In an extremely long tracking shot around Tompkins Square Park where the homeless spent a great deal of time, the focus is not on individuals standing in the soup line, the park itself is dealt with as a space. The way in which people move around is reflected by the circling voyeuristic camera. The location is made tangible as a result.

“The stranger´s gaze, which appropriates an image, represents an assault on what is sometimes someone´s last possession” is how the voiceover commentary problematizes the theft of somebody’s image. Documentary film as a controversy.

Festivals : Rotterdam 1991, Figueira da Foz 1991,
Media Art Biennale, Wroclaw/Breslau (PL) 2015

1 PRINT IN DISTRIBUTION


distribution format Digital file on USB stick (HD)
screen 16/9 (single screen)
speed 25 fps
sound sound
original language English
rental fee 72,00 €