Lost Motion


16mm film (color) 11 minutes  (1999)

Music: Tom Recchion

Lost Motion uses small cast metal figures, toy trains, decayed skyscrapers, and other found objects to follow a man’s search for an elusive woman.  From an illegible note found on a dollhouse bed, through impossible landscapes, the man waits for a train that never arrives.  His wanderings lead him to the other side of the tracks, a forgotten landscape of derelict erector- set buildings populated by lost souls.  Dream merges with nightmare in this post-industrial land of vivid night.

Lost Motion is the sumptuously told tale of a failed search…In her most visually lush film to date, Geiser superimposes images and drapes her scenes in moving shadow patterns.  She depicts the train’s arrival by superimposing images of dolls exiting model trains over the searching man’s figure… Ultimately the film’s fragmentary constructions become more than modernist denials of illusion and assertions of materiality: essential to the film’s tone, Geiser’s obviously illusory images evoke strong feelings, as the mundane drama of a failed meeting becomes intertwined with an essay on the way our lushest dreams fail by virtue of their very extravagance.”

—Fred Camper, Chicago Reader, 2000.

Selected Screening History:
New York International Film Festival, Views from the Avant-Garde, (2000)
The Walker Art Center 2000
Rotterdam International Film Festival (2001)
Museum of Modern Art (2001)
Skolska 28 Gallery, Prague (2005)

Janie GeiserLost Motion