RearWindow Timelapse | Jeff Desom

Last semester, I attended “Spatial Narratives”, a course by Panos Dragonas at University of Patras, Department of Architecture (blog) which investigated thoroughly the relation  between cinematic representation and architecture. During the lectures, we ‘ve watched extracts from a wide range of films which among others included Michelangelo Antonioni’s La Notte, Afred Hitchcock’s Vertigo and Peter Greeneway’s The Belly of An Architect. By the end of the semester, we would write an extended essay on a specific film analysing the basic cinematic techniques used, the movement of the camera etc. My essay focused on Alfred Hitchcock’s RearWindow (1954).

A few days ago, Architizer featured an article about Jeff Desom’s amazing visual installation included in Bring to Light: Nuit Blanche New York art festival, RearWindow loop (2011).

In this large-scale projection, Jeff Desom has combined dozens of images culled from Hitchcock’s suspense film Rear Window (1954). Projected onto a factory facade, the pastiched scenes provide a totalizing image of the activities witnessed by the film’s main character, L.B “Jeff” Jeffries (Jimmy Stewart), as he spies on building tenants from across the street. The resultant view of the film’s footage presents a panorama of the various characters, going about their business, even as murder takes place in the midst of their routines. 

“I dissected all of Hitchcock’s Rear Window and stiched it back together in After Effects. I stabilized all the shots with camera movement in them. Since everything was filmed from pretty much the same angle I was able to match them into a single panoramic view of the entire backyard without any greater distortions. The order of events stays true to the movie’s plot.”

Software used: After Effects / Photoshop / Coffee

Technical Requirements:

-Duration: 20 min
-Full Resolution: 2400x550px
-Projection surface approx.10×2 meters by aligning 3 projectors
-Matrox TripleHead2Go
-Computer to play quicktime in loop mode


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This entry was posted on April 7, 2012 by in Film and tagged , .
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