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  • Published: 24 September 2024
  • ISBN: 9780262048767
  • Imprint: MIT Press
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $79.99

Double Vision

The Cinema of Robert Beavers



A lavishly illustrated inside account of one of avant-garde film’s most original outsiders, the filmmaker Robert Beavers.

A lavishly illustrated inside account of one of avant-garde film’s most original outsiders, the filmmaker Robert Beavers.

Double Vision is a beautifully written work of biography and criticism that tells the inside story of Robert Beavers (b. 1949), a major American avant-garde filmmaker. Until now, Beavers’s dramatic life of itinerant self-imposed exile and resistance to commercial circulation has obscured his recognition as one of today’s most significant living filmmakers. In Double Vision, Rebekah Rutkoff—the first scholar to have full access to Beavers’s writing archive—pulls back the curtain to shed light on this deeply original underground figure and reveal the way Beavers’s films explore non-optical seeing—awareness itself—as an outcome of cinematic sight.

Born in the United States, Beavers moved to Europe as a teenager with his partner, filmmaker Gregory Markopoulos, in 1967. Over the following decades, he developed a unique cinematic language that fuses spiritual aims with cultural critique and braids domestic and erotic self-portraiture with studies of colored light and his own filmmaking process. Rutkoff uses the concept of “double vision” as a lens to explore the poetic feedback loop between Beavers’s filmmaking and writing practices, examine how his life-story and art are both inextricably bound to and distinct from Markopoulos’s, and demonstrate how his films defy standard art historical genealogies and binary thought. Richly illustrated with compelling film stills, many never before seen, Rutkoff’s definitive account of this outsider artist stands as the most detailed, knowledgeable, and fully researched to date. Double Vision celebrates Beavers’s singular vision and promises to make him known to all those who have not yet encountered his work.

  • Published: 24 September 2024
  • ISBN: 9780262048767
  • Imprint: MIT Press
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 336
  • RRP: $79.99

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Praise for Double Vision

"Rebekah Rutkoff's fertile mind disrupts the conventional, leaping over the usual ways of seeing and thinking. She embraces the imagination, refuses oppositions, say, between rational and irrational, and, like H.D., welcomes dreams as the mind's unconscious, helpful messenger. Her lovely, rhythmic sentences are delightful, as is her special comprehension of the visual and written." ―Lynne Tillman

"The rhythmic structure of Rutkoff's book separates mediums, encounters, first and second impressions, colors and symbols in sequences that relate without overlap in a clever and comic meditation on language, thought and abstraction."—Canadian Art

Rebekah Rutkoff's collection...pushes beyond what we have often come to expect from our books."—Vagabond City