The Witch's Cradle (1943), sometimes billed as Witches' Cradle, is an unfinished, silent, experimental short film written and directed by Maya Deren, featuring Marcel Duchamp, and filmed in Peggy Guggenheim's Art of This Century gallery. The surrealist film shows repetitive imagery involving a string fashioned in a bizarre, almost spiderweb-like pattern over the hands of several individuals, most notably an unnamed young woman (Pajorita Matta) and an elderly gentleman (Marcel Duchamp). The film also shows a shadowy darkness and people filmed at odd angles, an exposed human heart, and other occult symbols and ritualistic imagery which evokes an unsettling and dream-like aura.
Artist: Maya Deren
Production year: 1943
Catalogued as: EXPERIMENTAL, FANTASY/VISIONARY, MEDIA/EDUCATION, AVANTGARDE/KINETIC, ANALOG FILMING, ABSTRACTION/PSYCHEDELIA