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Today in 1970: With Venice Biennale trip, Michael Snow has arrived

Artist best known for experimental films brought still photos to legendary art show

Michael Snow at the Venice Biennale 21:57

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Michael Snow is Canada's coolest living artist. This is just a fact. The Toronto polymath is most famous for his 1967 experimental film Wavelength, praised by everyone from notoriously crotchety film critic legend Manny Farber to composer Steve Reich, which alone would make you the hippest person at any dinner party from Victoria to Fogo. Even before that, he commissioned jazz icons including Albert Ayler and Don Cherry (not that one) to make the soundtrack to his 1964 film New York Eye And Ear Control, which became a key document in the evolution of free jazz. Beat that, aspiring artists/lumbersexuals.

With the November release of Michael Snow – Sequences – A History of His Art​a retrospective monograph, the 86-year-old appears to be taking stock. Check out the above video, a CBC short documentary from 1970 about Snow's exhibition of still photos at that year's Venice Biennale (which remains one of the art world's most important events — Canada's Geoffrey Farmer has been chosen to represent us in 2016).

Visit CBC Archives for more throwbacks like this one.

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