past present future


Diminished - 1980 / 16mm / HD / 6min43 / color / mono / HD stereo


“A delicately structured non-verbal poem about loss, time and memory, closer in style to Michael Snow or Hollis Frampton than to Alain Resnais. Faded images lap-dissolve against ‘small sounds’ and enigmatic subtitles like voices from the past. A documentary of the heart.” 

Gene Youngblood


2017 - Cineinfinito / Santander, Spain / Cineinfinito #11 Richard Martin

2014 - International House Philadelphia / Solo Screening / 4 films by Richard Martin

2012 - Pacific Cinematheque / Art For Consenting Adults / Cineworks

2000 - Pacific Cinematheque / Image & Light - History & Influence

1984 - Ann Arbor Film Festival

Toronto International Film Festival / Perspective Canada

1983 - Art for Consenting Adults / Cineworks Screening

Vancouver Art & Artists / Vancouver Art Gallery Inaugural Exhibition

1982 - 9th NorthWest Film/Video Festival 1982 / Honorable Mention


RM Note:  "I made this for my step-father who had passed away. I had an old "Ambrotype" and if you held it up to the light, you could scratch away the backing to expose the negative. I set it up on an animation stand and created the sequence. This framed a central sequence of still photographs depicting a hospital visit."


"What is left over after the death of a loved one is an excess of feeling and emotion whose subject can now only be one’s own memory. This feeling can be directed into a new object, an artistic creation. Diminished is the result of that process."

Tony Reif / Pacific Cinematheque


"Richard Martin’s film DIMINISHED, deals with the interface that interests him, that of personal feeling and making images. The film is dedicated to his stepfather. Its form is simple: an antique photograph of a little boy, progressively obscured by white streaks and blotches, frames a central sequence of continually dissolving stills depicting moments from a hospital visit. A transitional snapshot of a middle-aged couple links by implication the little boy and the hospital room. There is no further clarification, although two brief subtitles (“no… not alone” and “I love you”) posit the filmmaker as eye and his relation to the empty hospital bed: a relation involving time, loss, and a looking again at the images that remain. It’s as if Martin is attempting to come to terms with his grief by universalizing it. He succeeds in telling his own life through everyman’s. The film is very poignant: it’s delicacy and reserve speak emotion."

Vancouver Art + Artists / Vancouver Art Gallery Inaugural Exhibition 1983