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Commissioned by REDCAT and produced at CalArts during a residency this spring in Los Angeles, Jesse Jones' new film takes Vsevolod Meyerhold's biomechanics études as its point of departure to position itself between the principles of Russian constructivism and its eventual appropriation by mass culture.
The Struggle Against Ourselves restages Meyerhold's biomechanical workshops (influential to the pioneering Soviet film director Sergei Eisenstein) as they appear in a series of photographs from the 1920s by the Russian photographer Alexander Grinberg.
The reconstructed études depict the spectacle of movement embedded within radical political ideology while remaining filled with the pathos of the historical past.
The Struggle Against Ourselves displays a convergence of Russian revolutionary art and American popular culture by emphasizing the collective human form and synchronicity of movement -- brilliantly usurped and reinterpreted in the films of Busby Berkeley.