History

2005
How Little We Know of Our Neighbours

How Little We Know of Our Neighbours is an experimental documentary about Britain's Mass Observation Movement and its relationship to contemporary issues regarding surveillance, public self-disclosure, and privacy. At its center is a look at the multiple roles cameras have played in public space, starting in the 1880's, when the introduction of the hand-held camera brought photography out of the studio and into the street. For the first time one could be photographed casually in public without knowledge or consent.

2004
How to Fix the World

Adapted from psychologist A.R. Luria’s research in the Islamic outskirts of the Soviet Union in the 1930s, How to Fix the World brings to life Luria's conversations with Central Asian farmers learning how to read and write under the unfamiliar principles of Socialism.

Colorful digital animations based on Max Penson's photographs of collective farmers play against a backdrop of landscape images shot in Uzbekistan in 2004.

2008
I've Heard Stories 1

This short animation explores various ways to narrate an incident that once took place in the mythical Hotel Carlton. Against images of the deserted hotel today, the artist sketches situations that evoke the rumors that once circulated around the place and the people who inhabited it.

This title is only available on Radical Closure.

1995
The Idea of North

"In the guise of chronicling the final moments of three polar explorers marooned on an ice floe a century ago, Baron's film investigates the limitations of images and other forms of record as a means of knowing the past and the paradoxical interplay of film time, historical time, real time and the fixed moment of the photograph. Marrying matter-of-fact voiceover and allusive sound fragments, evidence and illustration, in Baron’s words, "meaning is set adrift"."

--New York Film Festival, 1997, Views from the Avant-Garde program notes

2002
Il Mouille

You never thought that Franco-American relations could be so fun! A French thriller in the tradition of the Marquis de Sade, getting it on with Roger Corman's from-the-hip philosophy.

This title is only available on Animal Charm Videoworks: Volume 3, Computer Smarts.

2016
Deborah Stratman, Illinois Parables

An experimental documentary comprised of regional vignettes about faith, force, technology and exodus. Eleven parables relay histories of settlement, removal, technological breakthrough, violence, messianism and resistance, all occurring somewhere in the state of Illinois. The state is a convenient structural ruse, allowing its histories to become allegories that explore how we’re shaped by conviction and ideology.

1988
Images of the World and the Inscription of War

The vanishing point of Images of The World is the conceptual image of the 'blind spot' of the evaluators of aerial footage of the IG Farben industrial plant taken by the Americans in 1944. Commentaries and notes on the photographs show that it was only decades later that the CIA noticed what the Allies hadn't wanted to see: that the Auschwitz concentration camp is depicted next to the industrial bombing target.

2003
Imitations of Life

"It may indeed be questioned whether we have any memories at all from our childhood: memories relating to our childhood may be all that we possess. Our childhood memories show us our earliest years not as they were, but as they appeared at the later periods when the memories were aroused. In these periods of arousal, the childhood memories did not, as people are accustomed to say, emerge; they were formed at that time. And a number of motives, with no concern for historical accuracy, had a part in forming them, as well as in the selection of the memories themselves."

2000
In the Blood

In The Blood is an experimental documentary about American-Jewish attitudes towards Germans, and the role the Holocaust plays in shaping Jewish identity. This layered collage combines appropriated images, original footage, sampled sounds, and fragments of audio conversations, to examine perceptions and representations of Germany, cultural identity, collective memory, and history.

1969
Incredible String Band

Shot in December 1969, this video documents a live performance by the Incredible String Band at the Fillmore East, NYC. Beginning with footage of people waiting in line at the doors before the show begins, the video goes on to record the performance itself. Early on, the band experiences some audio problems, before settling down to play. We witness the band talking, tuning their instruments and playing.

1992
Internationale Bed and Breakfast

When everyone has forgotten the romantic refrains of the Internationale sung in different languages, Pablito, a blue front Amazon parrot, capable of living to 100 years old, will remember. He rings bells and is learning to whistle, hum and sing the Internationale in French, Spanish and German.

1990
Introduction to the End of an Argument

With a combination of Hollywood, European, and Israeli film; documentary; news coverage; and excerpts of 'live' footage shot in the West Bank and Gaza strip, Muqaddimah Li-Nihayat Jidal (Introduction to the End of an Argument) critiques representations of the Middle East, Arab culture, and the Palestinian people produced by the West. The video mimics the dominant media's forms of representation, subverting its methodology and construction.

2003
It's not my memory of it: three recollected documents

It's not my memory of it is a documentary about secrecy, memory, and documents. Mobilizing specific historical records as memories which flash up in moments of danger, the video addresses the expansion and intensification of secrecy practices in the current climate of heightened security. A former CIA source recounts his disappearance through shredded classified documents that were painstakingly reassembled by radical fundamentalist students in Iran in 1979.

2006
Jean Genet In Chicago

A queer rewriting of the events surrounding the 1968 National Democratic Convention in Chicago from the point of view of French writer Jean Genet. Along the way Genet will meet, amongst others, Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, the Yippies, the Black Panther Party and the Chicago police force... Ultimately, the video is about the difficulty of aligning political and sexual desires.

1971
Jerusalem Tapes: [Israeli] Black Panther on the Street

David Cort of the Videofreex travels to Jerusalem. This tape contains raw footage of him as he is taken on a tour through a poor neighborhood by a group of young men. There is talk of the Israeli Black Panther Party, and of drug dealers and poverty. Somebody says the tape is being made for the Jewish Museum in NYC. The Israeli guide talks about the movement, and says the bourgeois and the poor can meet through parties and drugs. They visit a woman and her children who are living in poverty, and interview her about the needs of her family.