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Color Cry 1952

  • Len Lye
  • January 1, 1952
  • 3 mins
In 1944 Lye moved to New York City, initially to direct for the documentary newsreel The March of Time. He settled in the West Village, where he mixed with artists who later became the Abstract Expressionists, encouraged New York’s emerging filmmakers such as Francis Lee, taught with Hans Richter, and assisted Ian Hugo on Bells of Atlantis. Color Cry was based on a development of the “rayogram” or “shadow cast” process, using fabrics as stencils, with the images synchronized to a haunting blues song by Sonny Terry, which Lye imagined to be the anguished cry of a runaway slave. —Harvard Film Archive

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