Film or Videomaking

2003
Bataille

In Bataille, fragments from the Akira Kurosawa’s film Rashomon are subject to a mirror effect. A scene in which two samurai fight each other becomes a cosmic field of monsters where horror and pain evoke beauty and joy.

2015

Big_Sleep™ explores problems in our archival urges. Via a single-channel desktop screencast, informatic elements ebb and flow—creating and relating interface absences. These gaps suggest that no amount of hard drive space can defy mortality.

1997
Binary Lives: Steina and Woody Vasulka

In 1964, Steina Vasulka (then Steinunn Bjarnadottir) married Woody Vasulka, a Czech engineer with a background in film. They later moved to New York where, with Andreas Mannik, they founded the Kitchen, a performance space dedicated to new media. The Vasulkas collaborated on a series of video works whose imagery arose primarily through the manipulation of the video signal at the level of the electron beam itself.

2003
Bird, Bath and Beyond

"I don't put myself into my movies because that would be too much--my pictures reflect my own feelings.  So hopefully it's entertaining.  Otherwise I can't bear looking at them, ha ha!"
--Mike Kuchar

In this dream-portrait of Mike Kuchar, he floats through his memories as the sea, space and sky drift past. Wrapped in odd costumes, he frolics with the imaginary creatures surrounding him, and recalls the creatures of his own imagination.

1977
Stan Brakhage: An Interview

A major figure among underground filmmakers, Stan Brakhage (1933-2003) boasted a prolific career that spanned more than 50 years and 300 films. His personal, independent films range in length from nine seconds to several hours, and contemplate such fundamental issues as form, life, and death—most famously in Window Water Baby Moving (1959), Dog Star Man (1961-65), and The Act of Seeing with One’s Own Eyes (1971). His early writings and journals about filmmaking are collected in Metaphors on Vision (1976).

1983
Long Beach Museum of Art, Nancy Buchanan: Video Viewpoints

In this interview video and performance artist Nancy Buchanan discusses her feminist and political work. Buchanan comments upon the advantages of video over performance in terms of accessibility—the ability for her videos to circulate and reach audiences she physically cannot, and their brevity and completed form—and her strategies to create an atmosphere for change. This Video Portrait features two of Buchanan’s videos in their entireties: the anti-nuclear weapons work An End to All Our Dreams (1982) and the more straightforwardly feminist Webs (1983).

2006
Building A Broken Mousetrap

DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT/SUMMARY: This film centers around one performance, when Holland-based musicians, The Ex, visited New York to play a concert. This performance is intercut with city scenes, first from Amsterdam and then New York, of construction sites, street life, and protests against the Iraq war and the Bush administration. The construction site scenes relate to the band's dedication to music as a realm for collaborative building and creative destruction.

2003
Buildings and Grounds/ The Angst Archive

"...a rumination, a series of borrowed 'dialogues' out of an ongoing argument with myself. It meanders, mentally and physically, reflecting on the conditions of being human; on transience, consciousness and desire. It uses landscapes as provocations, as sites of contemplation. And between the landscape and the thought, i.e. between the radical presence of the physical world and the idea, there is, more often than not, a distance, disbelief or irony."

--Ken Kobland

1981
Rudy Burckhardt: An Interview

Rudy Burckhardt (1914-1999) was best known as a photographer and filmmaker.  He moved to New York from his native Basel in 1935 at age 21. He shot portraits of many artists for Art News during the 1950s and early ’60s, capturing their work methods in candid and intimate photos. His films, frequently portraying cityscapes and urban life, include The Pursuit of Happiness (1940), Under the Brooklyn Bridge (1953), What Mozart Saw on Mulberry Street (1956), Square Times (1967), and Inside Dope (1971). 

2009
Burrito Bay

This video diary/travelogue centers on a tropical trip to Acapulco where yours truly hits both sand and surf with maximum impact. The actual movie that's being documented throughout this video bit the dust via a hard-drive malfunction, so this is almost all that remains (so far) of the doomed yet enjoyable venture. We all donned bathing suits and splashed our way through heaven and hell as Miguel Calderon directs the cursed venture in skimpy attire amid other scantily clad examples of electro-graphic expertise.

1971
CBS--Lily and Cleaver Tapes

The Videofreex had several experiences with the Black Panther Party, including interviewing Illinois Chapter Deputy Chairman Fred Hampton and New Haven Minister of Information Cappy Pinderhughes. In this tape, recorded on March 5th 1971, the Videofreex one-person camera crew Bart Friedman is walking the hallways of CBS, trying to find out where a video statement by Black Panther Eldridge Cleaver is located. The shots are mostly close up on people’s torsos and there is some image loss, but the sound is intact. The tape has an eerie espionage feel.

2000
Celestial Cravings

A rising moon and lowering standards in secular shenanigans highlight this documentary on the making of a sci-fi epic for mini-adults. The stakes are high and the porkchops well done as cast and crew blast off to kiddie dimensions only dreamed of by reformed perverts who revert back to more primitive states of fetishistic attire to usher in the new millenium.

2008
The Celluloid Cavalcade

A pile-up of events pertaining to cinematic expositions begins its whirlwind of activity in the south and then moves west with the sun to the “golden state” for all that glitters on a silver screen. Along the way we find a cast of characters befitting the halls of any art asylum in need of talented inmates. Rich and poor lend their support to a medium that entombs our tribal dreams in a cocoon of luminous filaments that ignite projection lamps statewide so that the darkness be not so blinding (whatever the hell that means?).

1999
Circle's Short Circuit

Circle's Short Circuit is an experimental feature-length work with neither a beginning nor an end—the film can be viewed from any random point. It moves through a circle of five interlocking episodes that describe the phenomenon of interruption in contemporary communication through various forms and modes, investigating causes, consequences, and side-effects. Genres shift along the episodic path of this circle, moving from documentary to essay, through collage, simulated live-coverage, and silent film.

2006
Jem Cohen 2006: An Interview

In this 2006 interview, filmmaker Jem Cohen discusses his early interest in art, his family’s welcome antipathy towards commercialization, and his unconventional, anti-mainstream film practice. In particular, Cohen discusses his film This is a History of New York, and how this piece exemplifies his interest in the “territory of sensation” rather than simple visual descriptiveness. Cohen concludes by discussing the role of archiving in his practice, and how compulsive documentation of the quotidian and unexceptional can result in the empowerment of the everyday.