This graduate-level course investigates the relationship between the media and technologies of film and video, on the one hand, and city space on the other, with particular reference to Italian cities.
What happens when the static or mobile camera meets the built environment, when it moves in, around or above buildings, when editing cuts and splices the city into “views”, when the flat rectangular screen frames three-dimensional space? How do films harness urban space to their narrative projects? How do they draw on and reorganize the pre-existing historical and social meanings of urban places? How are different elements of the urban environment photographed and manipulated? How does sound interact with images in films and video about urban space? In what ways can film and video serve as documents of urban space or act as agents of change in debates about uses of the city?
Analysis of the films will be supported by reading on space in cinema and on Italian cities. As well as looking at physical space we will pay attention to social space (e.g. centre versus periphery, commercial versus residential districts, space constructed by individuals through movement and activity) and to historical stratifications and changes within filmed cities (traces of the past, rebuilding, new developments).