Whole Grain: Experiments in Film & Video — Cubist Film Tradition

Film still from Fernand Léger’s Ballet Mécanique, 1924

Join us on Saturday, November 4, at 4:00 pm, for Cubist Film Tradition, a program of early avant-garde shorts that examine the influence of the Cubist movement in film. The program will highlight three influential European filmmakers—Fernand Léger, Hans Richter, and Oskar Fischinger—all of whom came to filmmaking from other artistic practices. The work of these filmmakers showcases some of the most influential experiments in film history, including Léger’s seminal Ballet Mécanique (1924). Cubist Film Tradition is part of Whole Grain, our new experimental film and video series. Paul Sattler, Schick Gallery Director and Associate Professor of Art, will introduce the films.


  • Ballet Mécanique (Fernand Léger, 1924, France, 15 min., 16mm)
  • Ghosts Before Breakfast (Hans Richter, 1928, Germany, 9 min)
  • Filmstudie (Hans Richter, 1925, Germany, 4 min)
  • Rennsymphonie (Hans Richter, 1928, Germany, 9 min)
  • R.5, Ein Spiel in Linien (Study NO. 5) 
(Oskar Fischinger, 1930, Germany, 3 min)
  • Allegretto (Oskar Fischinger, 1936, Germany, 2 min)
  • Kreise (Circles) (Abstract version) (Oskar Fischinger, 1933-34, Germany, 2 min)
  • Komposition in Blau (Composition in Blue) (Oskar Fischinger, 1935, Germany, 4 min)

About Whole Grain

The Tang Teaching Museum’s new series Whole Grain explores classic and contemporary work in experimental film and video. Our series of six programs this fall features programs highlighting found-footage pioneer Bruce Conner (October 7), contemporary digital animation (October 26November 28), short films in the Cubist film tradition (November 4), Maya Deren’s experimental documentary on Haitian Vodou (November 11), a feature-length exploration of the animated .gif (November 16), and the campy world of brothers George and Mike Kuchar (December 2).

Whole Grain is programmed by Museum Store and Publications Manager Sean Fuller and Educator for College and Public Programs Tom Yoshikami. All events are free and open to the public.

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