Views from the Avant-Garde

Program 8: Ernie Gehr

Precarious Garden, 2004 Loosely recalling the split-screened symmetry and bifurcation of unpopulated spaces in the epilogue of Jon Jost’s The Bed You Sleep In, Ernie Gehr expounds on the technique of split-screening through obstructed or otherwise baffled images that illustrate juxtaposed, partial and alternate views of the same mundane objects. Presented as a pure, soundless,… read more »

Secret History of the Dividing Line: A True Account in Nine Parts, 1999-2005

David Gatten’s largely text-based impressionist work-in-progress omnibus, Secret History of the Dividing Line: A True Account in Nine Parts is, at once, a mind-numbing, transfixing, frustrating, poignant, and narcoleptic grand unified theory into the figurative separation between word and image, film and narrative, presence and absence, empire and colony, mortality and legacy. Weaving inexorably throughout… read more »

Program 9: Peter Kubelka’s Truth and Poetry

During Peter Kubelka’s engaging, humorous, and inspiring presentation (and screening of his latest film), he reinforced several concepts and overarching theories that have fueled his personal philosophy and his craft. The first is humankind’s primordial nature as hunter and gatherer, and that as a filmmaker, Kubelka adapts to this primitive instinct though his penchant for… read more »

Views from the Avant-Garde: Saul Levine

Note to Pati, 1969 Something of an aesthetic convergence between the diaristic autobiographies and quotidian images of Jonas Mekas (as illustrated in his Diaries, Notes and Sketches chronicles) and the hand crafted dissonance and material violence of Stan Brakhage, Note to Pati presents a seemingly typical winter scene – the day after a snow storm… read more »

Eniaios IV “Nefeli Photos” Reel 2, 2004

Gregory Markopoulos’s self-contained excerpt, Eniaios IV “Nefeli Photos” Reel 2, a fragment from his legendary, 80 hour, twenty-two cycle magnum opus, Eniaios is something of an alchemic composition of disparate, often contrasting images that conflate towards a dense singularity that no longer resembles its elemental forms – a vibrant, enigmatic, and sublime meditation on architectural… read more »

A Trip to the Louvre x2, 2004

Resonating in a similar vein as the organically meditative – though less ethereal – cultural elegies of Aleksandr Sokurov (specifically, Elegy of a Voyage and Russian Ark or a stylistically flattened early Alain Resnais art documentary (most notably, Van Gogh and Guernica), A Trip to the Louvre seems on the surface to be devoid of… read more »

Novel City, 2008 / Horizontal Boundaries, 2008

Novel City, 2008 (Leslie Thornton) While Leslie Thornton’s 1983 film Adynata posed questions of exoticism and alterity in its cultural examination of China, Novel City represents a different, yet equally jarring notion of otherness – one borne of China’s rapid industrialization, economic transformation, and cultural amnesia at the turn of the century. Interweaving excerpts from… read more »

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