Pulling Up Roots is the emotional journey of a woman who is navigating the tenuous strain between the past and the future.
Assemblage is a recently rediscovered lost film featuring Merce Cunningham and his early dance company: Carolyn Brown, Sandra Neels, Valda Setterfield, Meg Harper, Susana Hayman-Chaffey, Jeff Slayton, Chase Robinson, and Mel Wong. A collaboration with director and former dancer Richard Moore, Assemblage features Cunningham dancing with his company in a public happening in San Francisco's Ghirardelli Square in November 1968. Cunningham's riveting performance--conceived from the beginning as a dance staged for the camera--is amplified by Moore's astonishing special effects and a soundtrack by John Cage, David Tudor and Gordon Mumma. Rediscovered after Cunningham's death, Assemblage was transferred from 16mm and colorized by artist and filmmaker Charles Atlas, himself a longtime collaborator of Cunningham's.
The Making of Amarillo Ramp is Nancy Holt's final film. The piece documents Holt, Richard Serra and Tony Shafrazi as they complete Robert Smithson's unfinished earthwork, Amarillo Ramp, in the months after his death in 1973. The 1973 still photography and video footage, which documents their completion of Amarillo Ramp according to Smithson's specifications, was edited by Holt in 2013.
In 1973, Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye was both a critical and commercial flop. Set in a time transposed, neo-noir Los Angeles, the film flew out of theaters and was never shown on television. All known prints were destroyed, and The Long Goodbye was considered irrevocably lost, an important missing link from Altman's greatest period. When filmmaker and archivist Lampert serendipitously purchased a film print titled El Adios Largo [sic] from a collector through the mail, he discovered that this 16mm, black and white, cropped, Spanish-language dubbed copy was actually a reduction of Altman's 35mm, color, widescreen, English-language film. Recognizing its importance, Lampert and a team of volunteer preservationists set out on a multi-year mission to preserve this unearthed gem using the most up-to-date digital technology.
In OM Rider, Takeshi Murata deftly weaves the aesthetics of retro-noir, video games, and Italian giallo film into a cinematic exercise in cool, narrative minimalism and distilled rebellion. In a vast desert bathed in neon hues, a misfit lycanthrope blasts syncopated techno rhythms into the...
Satterwhite fuses drawing, live performance and digital technology to translate and document personal mythology. Here the artist's sources are a home video of a family cookout and his mother's drawings. Hand-tracing the drawings and importing them into a 3D animation program, Satterwhite builds a lush, computer-generated landscape. Performing in front of the camera and "green screen" 100 times, he inserts his dance performances into the virtual space to create what he terms "a Hieronymous Bosch 'Garden of Earthly Delights' inspired landscape."
Writes Silver: "A man returns, after fifty years, to Chinatown to care for his dying mother. He is a librarian, a re-cataloguer, a gay man, a watcher, an impersonator. He passes his time collecting images that he puts before us -- his witnesses and collaborators. Sitting in the dark, we share his cloak of invisibility, both a benefit and a curse."
CENTER JENNY is one of four movies to date completed in 2013 by Trecartin, first shown as a work in progress at the Arsenale of the the Venice Biennale. Since settling in Los Angeles in 2010, Fitch and Trecartin have designed and built a modular maze of sets on a soundstage with the help of Hollywood technicians who have rigged the space with lights and hydraulics enabling it to move and change for different projects.
In Junior War, a throng of high schoolers congregates at night for a party in the woods sometime in the year 2000. A band plays, the kids get drunk, the boys and girls tepidly flirt, and groups deploy into cars for the purpose of destroying mailboxes, tee-peeing houses, breaking lawn ornaments, and sparring with the police. The film is composed entirely of footage Trecartin took during his senior year of high school in exurban Ohio; as such, it baits the viewer with genealogical significance.
Scrub Study explores relationships among artist, voice and image, with technology as intermediary. This composited multi-channel video is based around a direct head-and-shoulders view of the artist performing various autodidactic extended techniques. The source footage has been fed into a...
In Antin's 1979 performance extravaganza Before the Revolution, her persona Eleanora Antinova, an imaginary black ballerina in Diaghilev's Ballet Russe, performs as White Queen, Marie Antoinette, while quarreling with the great impressario about racial profiling and the promise of modernism. In revival performances at the Hammer Museum in 2013, live actors joined the original cast of life-scale puppets to perform this allegorical tragic-comedy, creating a kaleidoscopic world of shifting selves and ambiguous realities, with ballerinas, kings, lambs, maids, madmen and revolutionaries. Re-invented and transformed into a film, live actors and puppets move through a ruined landscape of narrative fragments of psychological and political oppression, a musical, poetic and dramatic interplay of continuities and interruptions, the dark chaotic music of modern life.
To create Channels/Inserts, Cunningham and Atlas divided the Cunningham Dance Company's Westbeth studio into sixteen possible areas for dancing and used chance methods based on the I Ching to determine the order in which these spaces would be used, the number of dancers to be seen, and the events that would occur in each space. Atlas employed cross-cutting and animated mattes or wipes to indicate a simultaneity of dance events occurring in different spaces, as well as to allow for diversity in the continuity of the image.
This video-dance collaboration between Merce Cunningham and Charles Atlas, was shot in the vaulted Synod House of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. Exemplifying Cunningham's idea that dancers operate autonomously, Coast Zone's choreography is mirrored in the fragmentary nature of its filmic technique. Soloists move within and are traversed by ensembles of two or three dancers that break off from one another and then reassemble, bringing to mind shifting sands or the ebb and flow of a coastline that the title of the dance and its music evoke.
Atlas records a late-2000's revival performance of the 1993 dance CRWDSPCR, which Merce Cunningham choreographed using the choreographic software program LifeForms. In program notes to a performance of the dance, Cunningham suggested that the vowel-less title referred to the way in which technology both crowded space and quickened the pace of daily life. The project merges Cunninham's vision of a decentered organization of the stage with Atlas' use of the computer as a conceptual extension of chance-generated decision-making.
In Fractions I, four video monitors share the screen space with the dancers. Throughout the performance, these monitors show close-ups of the performers in the dance space, as well as images of those moving outside of the space.The performance suggests tension between what is seen and what is left unseen, and in turn, between different parts and their whole.
In Locale, Atlas' camera movements map precisely onto Cunningham's choreography. Three kinds of cameras are used: Steadicam, a Movieola crab dolly and an Elemac dolly with a crane arm. Locale is structured in four parts, based upon the use of specific cameras, dancers and time sequences. Atlas also designed the costumes, playing thematically with television and video technology by incorporating the hues of color television adjustment bars and the grayscale tones used to adjust black-and-white monitors. The bright leotards of the dancers are imprinted against the studio windows and the city backdrop.
Squaregame Video is a video-dance collaboration between Merce Cunningham and Charles Atlas, recorded in the choreographer's Westbeth studio. As a video-dance (that is, a dance choreographed specifically for the camera), Squaregame represents a dynamic integration of mediums. True to its title, Squaregame's choreography fits in a square area within the larger rectangular space of the Westbeth studio stage.
This 2008 film by Charles Atlas documents a performance of Merce Cunningham's Suite for Five, which was first performed on May 18, 1956 at the University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana. Originally titled Suite for Five in Space and Time, the piece was made by adding a trio, a duet and a quintet to Cunningham's earlier Solo Suite in Space and Time. A program note from the premier performance read, "The events and sounds of this ballet revolve around a quiet center, which, though silent and unmoving, is the source from which they happen."
In The Days of the Commune, Beloff reimagines Bertolt Brecht's 1949 play on the rise and fall of the 1871 Paris Commune as a response to the Occupy Wall Street movement, which began in the fall of 2011 in New York City's Zuccotti Park.
This feature film traces the history of the 50-year-long collaboration between choreographer Merce Cunningham and composer John Cage. Award-winning filmmaker and Cunningham collaborator Elliot Caplan brings together rare footage from the Cunningham and Cage archives, interviews with principal figures involved in the collaboration, and candid documents of their art and lives. The result is a revealing portrait of the two men and their spirit of adventure and iconoclastic thinking.
Elliot Caplan's 1996 CRWDSPCR documents the rehearsal and production of Merce Cunningham's dance of the same title, which was commissioned for the stage by the American Dance Festival and first performed in Durham, North Carolina, on July 15, 1993. In addition to documenting daily activity at...
Seoungho Cho writes: "I received permission to videotape an unknown sannyasi having a siesta as if he were in a deep meditation. Usually we believe that body is the vehicle of soul. I would not know what kind of soul this old, tired and unconsciously open body might suggest. I came to think that what I am searching for is not his soul but mine, which is still as of yet unknown to myself."
Seoungho Cho transforms a sublime natural landscape into a stunning abstraction through precise electronic manipulation. Writes Cho: "Blue Desert is one in a series of ongoing visual struggles with Death Valley, a specific desert landscape which I have worked with since 1992. It is also not the last piece, as I have every intention to continue producing works about Death Valley. Death Valley has been quite simply my favorite place on the earth since my first visit in 1992."
The golden, barren landscape of Death Valley, recorded by Cho from a moving car, provides the luminous and mysterious texture of Buoy. Cho reflects on the polar extremes of this desert, once the floor of a vast sea and now traversed by tourists. In contrast to the horizontal landscape, which floats ceaselessly past Cho's camera, vertical "strata" pattern the imagery, creating an axis between natural landscape and Cho's composition.
Seoungho Cho writes: "When I noticed some moments from my studio window in its prosaic reality, I started to make a 'List' of these accumulated moments of lights and colors in time suggesting a flow of unconsciousness. Ironically, throughout the seasons with endless changes of light and shadows, I became to numb to time. I have been in the midst of a meditation, which extended both through my visual and psychological plane."
Seoungho Cho employs complex visual editing and rich sound to explore the landscape of Death Valley. He writes that he has "...refined a theme that has obsessed and haunted me, that I have struggled with, and which I owe many of my most important artistic achievements—the desert."
A moody landscape of mountainous islands, recorded from a wave-tossed boat, is infused with the bobbing motions of the camera. In an effort to override the ever-shifting horizon, Cho splits the image into bands, each showing different vantages on the scene: the bluish outline of the islands, interspersed with views of the water's surface, golden in sunlight. The flickering of the bands, especially those of the water's choppy surface, is suggestive of digital static, a sense matched by Stephen Vitiello's evocative soundtrack.
Silenced is a poetic tableau of village life surrounding the Morning Calm Monastery in Luang Prabang, Laos. Cho manipulates time within fixed frames, creating stunning time-lapse landscape shots and evocative slow-motion images. The monks' vibrant robes are seen in relation to the everyday life...
Stoned begins in silence. An image of a Buddhist monastery—a long stone corridor lined with receding columns—appears to jerk forward and slightly recede, or move tremulously back and forth. The single high notes of a piano begin to sound in a halting counterpoint to the agitated image, which...
Seoungho Cho writes: "This work is based on an attempt to psychologically document my routine but unconscious line of questioning as to if I were a nonbeliever. At one of the holiest places in the world, the birthplace of the Buddha, Rumbini in Nepal, I find apathy in the tension between my perception of the religion and culturally ingrained responses to my psychological state. I became aware of the ephemeralness. While they were doing what they have to do, I only gazed them. I only can see what I known. I only can see this much at this time. In the eyes of dog, he only can see another dog. Maybe I was a dog."
"A documentary that details the early days of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, the film tells the story of the making of the dance Scramble, showing the daily routine of the dancers involved, and other aspects of producing new work. Includes performance footage at the Philip Johnson Glass...
First composed and performed in 1965, Variations V is a true testament to 1960's experiments with "intermedia"—a coexistence and cutting across of artistic genres that profoundly informed Cunningham's choreographic practice. Video is materially integrated into the performance, with projections...
This documentary is in two parts, with the second part, Coast Zone, available separately. The first part of the program features a revealing and informal discussion between Cunningham and his longtime collaborators, composer and musician John Cage and artist Robert Rauschenberg. Their lively interchange is intercut with archival footage from their collaborative works, Travelogue, Minutiae, and Antic Meet. They discuss designing and composing for dance, aesthetic philosophies, and the adventures encountered when touring and performing together.
Davidovich produced The Live! Show on Manhattan Cable Television's leased access Channel J from 1979 to 1984. The program featured performances by and interviews with art world personalities, live phone-ins and home-shopping segments. In this episode, aired February 18, 1983, Davidovich's character Dr. Videovich's expounds on Spanish accents on American television. The episode includes an excerpt from a Tony Oursler video, a performance by Tim Maul, and a Fluxus Festival promo tape.
Davidovich produced The Live! Show on Manhattan Cable Television's leased access Channel J from 1979 to 1984. The program featured performances by and interviews with art world personalities, live phone-ins and home shopping. In this episode, cablecast on January 21, 1983, Davidovich's character "Dr. Videovich" proposes a theory of cable access as "generic" or "off-brand" television. Herbert Wentscher delivers an absurdist lecture on "The History of Video" and Paul McMahon performs as the "Rock & Roll Psychiatrist," offering on-the-spot advice to viewers who phone in with their troubles.
Davidovich produced The Live! Show on Manhattan Cable Television's leased access Channel J from 1979 to 1984. The program featured performances by and interviews with art world personalities, live phone-ins and a home-shopping segment. This episode, cablecast January 28, 1983, features performances by Linda Montano as "Sister Jacques Bernadette" and Ann Magnuson as "Alice Tully Hall with the Hall Family." In addition, Davidovich presents footage of a press conference in which the art critic Les Brown speaks about future possibilities for artists and television.
In Day and Night, Jacobs teases out and toys with the ability of digital video to be infinitely and seamlessly manipulated, as well as its capacity for keeping reality just beyond the viewer's grasp. Here he uses images of nature as his source material, applying exacting technical effects to create a stunning fusion of the organic and the digital.
Writing on his Huffington Post blog about the new episodes of his artworld soap opera series As Da Art World Might Turn, Linzy states, "The new version continues to center around Katonya, Big Feet Freddy, and Sholeva Sure's melodramatic journey through 'their' contemporary art world, but also...
In this edition of Moulton's narrative series, the artist's character Cynthia suffers from Restless Leg Syndrome, and seeks relief in pharmaceutical ads on TV and in health magazines. In a domestic world enlivened with animated dance and mystic poetry (written and read by poet John Coletti), Cynthia finds relief in the healing mineral AION A, discovered by Swiss artist Emma Kunz.
High school is where life starts to get serious. You are becoming the person you were meant to be, and you dream about what you will do. Forty years later -- almost a lifetime -- what happened? Did things work out the way you imagined? Are you where you want to be? And after all that time -- who are you? How are you doing in the performance of your life? Filmmaker John Sanborn made discoveries by attending his 40th high school reunion with a film crew to interview former classmates, find answers to those questions, and gain a measure of closure. The result is a highly personal video memoir that blends interviews with contemplations and meditations on the unpredictable challenges and life-altering transformations fifteen graduates from Walt Whitman High School faced in the years before they all met again. And to show us, ultimately, that life is a long list of things.
"The Wooster Group's 1977 production RUMSTICK ROAD has been recognized by critics and scholars as a landmark work that helped usher in a new era of experimental performance. Composed by Spalding Gray and Elizabeth LeCompte in response to the suicide of Gray's mother, RUMSTICK ROAD combines Gray's personal recorded conversations, family letters, the writings of Mary Baker Eddy, 35mm slides, music, and dance.