Luther Price: Light Windows

As a filmmaker, Luther Price salvages film footage from discarded prints of old documentaries, Hollywood classics, home movies, how-to reels, and pornography to cut, alter, and reassemble into handmade films. His process often involves physically and chemically manipulating the filmstrip surface by painting, burying, applying ink, or effacing it with scratches and scrapes. The resulting films are completely unique objects, and when combined with light the projections become highly charged visual imagery, transforming 8 mm, 16 mm, and 35 mm found film into unforgettable cinematic experiences.

Price has recently turned his attention to making 35 mm slides from discarded film stock. He applies the same labor-intensive technical processes used for his projected film works. Comparable to the unique qualities each frame possesses in his films, the slides, too, are discrete works compiled from a range of materials, including found images, patterns, dirt, mold, insects, inkblots, and stains of various colors. Price utilizes the standard window of the 35 mm slide to arrange and crop his materials. The exhibition Light Windows consists of six 35 mm slide projectors, each with a carousel of 80 handmade slides from his ongoing series Light Fractures projected onto vertical panels installed throughout the gallery on Level 1. The multiscreen visual and aural kaleidoscopic installation transforms the site into an expanded cinematic space where spectators are immersed among projectors responsible for both the illuminated images and the whirring soundscape of simultaneously rotating trays.

Luther Price: Light Windows is organized by James Voorhies, the John R. and Barbara Robinson Family Director of the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts. Price’s retrospective is organized by Haden Guest, Director of the Harvard Film Archive.

Luther Price
Born in Revere, Massachusetts, Luther Price studied sculpture and performing arts at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. His work in film, performance, and installation has been shown nationally and internationally. Recent exhibitions and film screenings include Luther Price Lost and Found, transmediale, Berlin (2014); Now and Forever, CIRCUS Gallery, Berlin (2013); How Deep is Your Love?, Dirty Looks at MoMA: Mining the Collection, MoMA/PS1, Long Island City (2013); E’wao Kagoshima and Luther Price, Vilma Gold, London (2013); James and Audrey Foster Prize, ICA, Boston (2013); Luther Price Retrospective, International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, curated by Ed Halter (2013); Group Exhibition, Xavier Hufkens, Brussels, curated by Clarissa Dalrymple (2013); Dirty Looks: Tom Rhoads (Luther Price), The Kitchen, New York (2013); 7 Films by Luther Price, ICA, London (2012); Second Nature: Abstract Photography Then and Now, deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA (2012); #9, Callicoon Fine Arts, New York (2012); Whitney Biennial (2012); A Luther Price Bestiary, 50th New York Film Festival: Views from the Avant-Garde, curated by Mark McElhatten and Gavin Smith (2012); Alone in the Dark: Projected Phobias, San Francisco Cinematheque (2010).

Luther Price lives and works in Revere, Massachusetts.

Luther Price: Light Windows is part of The Interstitial, a program that takes advantage of the time and physical space between exhibitions. The Interstitial hosts performances, installations and other time-based events that transpire over the course of an evening or several days.


James Voorhies


January 26–February 1, 2015

Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts
Harvard University
24 Quincy Street
Cambridge, MA

Made possible with funding and staff of Harvard University's Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts in collaboration with the Harvard Film Archive