From Here to Eternity is a photographic project made up of 50 still images taken from Hollywood films made between the heavily censored golden age of cinema in the early 1900s to the 1960s era of sexual liberation. These films include From Here to Eternity (1953), Some Like it Hot (1959), Another Time Another Place (1958), North by Northwest (1959), Goldfinger (1964); each image represents a coded sex scene, an implicit suggestion of ‘romantic’ activity used to get around censorship. Ordinarily these scenes would disappear in the flow of the filmic narrative, but their digitisation means that these moving images can very quickly become still and photographic. In this project, the moving images are stilled and transformed from digital files to transparency film and presented on an outmoded Kodak slide projector.
The digitisation of historical celluloid films has created an archive of cinematic styles, narratives and censorship. When viewing these historical films today, certain styles of movie making become increasingly visible, particularly scenes that were suppressed by censors. This project uses photography to draw attention to this subtle, implicit language of filmmaking. This project considers the way that the implicit language used in these films is often overlooked when compared to the explicit presentation of sexuality in the contemporary era. It shows that outmoded photographic objects and technologies can help us understand the ways that cultures make stories about their bodies.
The work was selected for a solo exhibition at the Centre for Contemporary Photography, Melbourne.