Toronto Metropolitan University
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The Projector's Noises: A Media Archaeology Of Cinema Through The Projector

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posted on 2021-05-23, 19:06 authored by Kelly F.W. Egan
This dissertation provides a media archaeology of the film projector, concentrating on the conceptualization and use of projector noise through the lens of the modernist and contemporary avant-garde, that offers new ways of understanding cinema, interpreting embodied cinematic space, and extending the discourse on audiovision in general. Looking toward the projector allows us to see how it is a productive labourer in the construction of cinematic experience. Listening to its noises— which have been framed as insignificant and/or unwanted—allows us to understand the way cinema is in fact a performative art with a certain kind of liveness. Part One of this dissertation traces an alternative history of cinema focused on the projector beginning with the pre-cinema technologies of the camera obscura, the telescope and the magic lantern. Part Two analyzes how the avant-garde has engaged with the projector-as-instrument during three major technological transitional moments in cinema: first, early cinema and the rise of the Cinématographe by looking at the Italian futurists, specifically Arnaldo Ginna and Bruno Corra’s interest in the projector-as-instrument and the relationship between the Cinématographe and Luigi Russolo’s





  • Doctor of Philosophy


  • Communication and Culture

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • Dissertation

Thesis Advisor

Monique Tschofen