The Festival of (In)appropriation #6: Contemporary Found Footage Filmmaking
Curators Jaimie Baron, Lauren Berliner and Greg Cohen in person!
Filmforum is delighted to welcome curators Jaimie Baron, Lauren Berliner and Greg Cohen to introduce the world premiere of the 6th edition of the Festival of (In)appropriation! Founded in 2009, the Festival of (In)appropriation is a yearly showcase of contemporary short audiovisual works that appropriate film or video footage and repurpose it in “inappropriate” and inventive ways. Whether you call it collage, compilation, found footage, détournement, or recycled cinema, this kind of work generates novel juxtapositions of elements which produce new meanings and ideas unintended by the original makers – meanings and ideas that are, in other words “inappropriate.” This year’s show includes new work by Gregg Biermann, Celeste Fichter, Zoe Fothergill, Josh Hite, Soda_Jerk, Justin Lincoln, Emma Osbourn, Cheryl Pagurek, Liz Rodda, Kelly Sears, Scott Stark and Tina Takemoto.
For more event information: www.lafilmforum.org, or 323-377-7238
Tickets: $10 general, $6 students/seniors; free for Filmforum members. Available by credit card in advance from Brown Paper Tickets or at the door
Walking on Water
by Celeste Fichter (US, 2012, 1:16)
The classic biblical story of Jesus’ walk across the Sea of Galilee is revisited in Walking on Water. Over 70 different depictions culled from the internet - ranging from coloring books to Medieval painting – animate the narrative of Jesus’ walk on the water to rescue his disciples from their boat during a storm and Peter’s attempt to follow suit only to sink before Jesus saves him from drowning. The epic tale, relayed in 60 seconds, is accompanied by the soundtrack to the 1970’s TV police drama Hawaii Five-O.
by Justin Lincoln (US, 2013, 3:37)
This video is inspired in part by Structural Film Makers such as Hollis Frampton and Paul Sharits. It uses screen capture software, an archive of my tumblr favorites, a Processing program that randomizes text, and the browser scroll bar to make visual montages These videos are explorations in how we learn to scan text and image online and how we become used to the recurrences and repetitions of those texts and images as data.
by Scott Stark (US, 2012, 11:00)
Industrial penetrations into the arid Texas landscape yield a strange and exotic flowering. Using images from the Texas Archive of the Moving Image, based on oil drilling footage from the first half of the 20th century.
Looking for Jiro
by Tina Takemoto (US, 2011, 5:50)
Looking for Jiro is a queer meditation on the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II. Jiro worked in the prison mess hall and liked muscular men. How did this dandy gay bachelor survive imprisonment? This queer musical mash-up video features drag king performance, U.S. propaganda footage, muscle building, and homoerotic bread making.
by Cheryl Pagurek (Canada, 2007, 8:23)
Passage evokes several layers of time and place through video imagery and sound. Its ephemeral quality evokes the ‘present-ness’ of the disappearing past, referencing the artist’s familial history through archival film footage. Separate yet connected narratives unfold: Present-day video footage follows richly coloured light and shadow patterns appearing inside and outside Pagurek’s house throughout the course of the day, from the cool blue-purples of morning light to the warm oranges of early evening. Meanwhile, black and white archival film footage provides fleeting glimpses of Jewish life during the early part of the last century – everyday life in pre-World War II Eastern Europe, and the immigration of some to ghettoized urban life in North America.
by Kelly Sears (US, 2012, 7:00)
The Rancher mirrors the presidency of Lyndon Baines Johnson without ever identifying him by name. Instead, he becomes an archetypal backdrop to explore one man’s fall from power as a metaphor for other historical narratives.
by Celeste Fichter (US, 2012, 2:46)
Using audio extracted from YouTube videos of children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and imagery sourced from the Internet, Pledged is a video about the dubious effectiveness of the indoctrination of children too young developmentally to comprehend the concept of patriotism.
Magic Mirror Maze
by Gregg Biermann (US, 2013, 5:10)
The famed “hall of mirrors” sequence of Welles’ classic noir The Lady from Shanghai is seen through a succession of four algorithmic progressions of split screen patterns. The result is hypnotic, kaleidoscopic and a bit uncanny.
The Time that Remains
by Soda_Jerk (Australia, 2012, 11:55)
In this spectral melodrama, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis perpetually wake to find themselves haunted by their own apparitions and terrorized by markers of time. Isolated in their own screen space, each woman must struggle to reclaim time from the gendered discourses of aging that mark her as fading and ‘past her prime’. The Time that Remains is the third work in Soda_Jerk’s Dark Matter series. Each work in the series takes the form of a séance fiction where encounters are staged between the past and future selves of a deceased screen star.
by Emma Osbourn (UK, 2012, 4:30)
In the story of Arachne and Athena, Athena is the norm, the establishment, a code for propriety and order. Her textile depicts the Parthenon whilst Arachne’s subversive weaving depicts the misdeeds and weaknesses of the gods. This film is stitched with black thread by hand and by machine. Images of events in an anonymous young American woman’s life are juxtaposed with shots of sewing directly into the filmstrip. This disruptive and excessive sewing contrasts with conventional needlework that values tiny, neat stitching. The rebellious thread runs with abandon across the ordered feminine actions: Arachne’s misrule in Athena’s order.
by Zoë Fothergill (Scotland/UK, 2013, 9:37)
Triptych B remixes a ten second clip of someone stroking a bee into three short interconnected films of found footage. It brings tactile experience, and how it is learned, taught and shared, to the fore, exploring how the screen can have a physicality that moves away from the delineation of objects, subjects and observers towards the luxury of experiencing surface, texture and touch. Triptych B’s three sections Be Touching, Should Be, and Be a Bee are part celebration of the ‘how to’ video, part synesthetic experiment and in part a commentary on social sensitivity.
by Liz Rodda (US, 2013, 7:37)
In his essay, “Beyond the Pleasure Principle,” Freud describes the death drive as a force that makes us behave in ways that counter Darwinian self-preservation. The video, Death Drive, consists of two YouTube videos shown side-by-side. On the left is a car driving smoothly through the Grand Canyon. On the right, a driverless car is stuck in reverse and circles continuously. The accompanying audio, sampled from a warped LP, suggests both decay and ceaseless repetition.
Cliffs Quarries Bridges and Dams
by Josh Hite (Canada, 2012, 4:00)
Cliffs Quarries Bridges and Dams is a series of moments while bodies are briefly underwater. Jumpers are sequenced by the audible reactions of onlookers behind the camera.
by Scott Stark (US, 2012, 3:00)
A found 16mm film featuring an able practitioner of what is often called “the purest sport.”