Ken Jacobs Characteristics


Ken Jacobs worked with painting and film. His intent for his films is to give the idea of experience. His intent is to create these films based on normal human experiences. He uses a lot of relativity and perception in his films. In a couple of his films, like Georgetown Loop and Disorient Express, he focuses on trains. He sticks to objects and shows the different perceptions that could be acknowledged. All of his films have some kind of symbolism, easy enough for the viewer to associate with.

Source: Beavers / Markopoulos Millenium Film Journal MFJ Issue No. 32/33 (Fall 1998). "An Interview with Ken Jacobs by Julie Hampton" http://www.sva.edu/MFJ/journalPages/MFJ32,33/hampton.html

--John M. Bartruff Jr., 2000


After Jacobs attained success with his first films in the 50's he gained success as an "experimental" filmaker. His first films were generally about things such as despair and desparation. For his most famous film Tom Tom The Pipers Son he reshot some segments of the film to make it "pursue a deep analysis into the visual aspects of the film".

Another of Jacobs' characteristics is that he continually tries to find other ways of recycling images. I believe that this means that he tries to use some of the same images from before in order to get a different feeling for the same shot.
Another of Jacobs characteristics is that he sees the world of film as an "enveloping world that always draws him in".

Another characteristic is that he always studied painting and film but favors film more and still uses some painting references in his films. Another characteristic is that Jacobs always wants to give "meaning" to his films. Because he wants to give the illusion of "real life" he uses a lot of "relativity and perception in his films".

The final and possibly biggest characteristic is that he tends to use symbolism in order to get his point across in his films. If his audience understands his symbols then they are understanding his material. These are some of the major characteristics of Ken Jacobs and his work.
--Mark Fijalkowski, 2001




Ken Jacobs