Hollis Frampton
[b. 1936, Wooster/Ohio - d. 1984, Buffalo/New York]

About Hollis Frampton | Biography | Works in the Exhibition

In his engagement with film in the 1960s and 70s, Hollis Frampton contributed decisively to this mediumís development. Frampton began as a poet within the circle around Ezra Pound. In the late 1950s as a photographer he was a colleague and friend of Frank Stella's and Carl Andre's. Involvement with language and literature were therefore important sources of inspiration for him, strongly influencing his understanding of film in terms of content and conceptuality.
Central to his investigations were above all questions about the materiality of film, its visual structure and time-bound composition, as well as issues having to do with the relationship between image and language. Even Framptonís early photographic works, which demonstrate his turning away from the medium of painting, already point in that direction: Word Pictures [1962] forms the basis for the film Zorns Lemma [1970], in which quantitative theoretical systems and the alphabet are employed as structural elements.
He developed his highly regarded film nostalgia [1971] out of photographs, which with one exception he had taken himself. With these compositions of images and spoken commentary, Frampton opened up multiplicitous relations, which not only place the medium of photography and its relationship to language in question, but relational systems altogether. Frampton's theoretical texts fascinate with their unusual learnedness and clarity. His teaching positions at various university institutions began in the mid-1960s. With teaching in the Department of Media Study at SUNY, Buffalo the development of computer hardware and software, working with computer-generated images, and an inquiry into using the computer as a creative tool became the center of his interest.