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Karen Yasinsky: Perpetual Motion

Karen Yasinsky: Perpetual Motion

I Choose Darkness, 2009, by Karen Yasinsky

Los Angeles Filmforum presents

Karen Yasinsky: Perpetual Motion

October 19, 2018, 8:00pm

At the Echo Park Film Center, 1200 N. Alvarado St., Los Angeles

Los Angeles premieres, with Karen Yasinsky in person!

Filmforum is delighted to bring back Karen Yasinsky, after hosting her in 2014, with the LA premieres of films made since then, plus new opportunities to see some of her delightful earlier work. Yasinsky is the real deal, making simple and complex animations that are charming, resonant, beautiful, and a bit mysterious. 

"Recent films by Karen Yasinsky evidence an interest in the fragment, using puppetry, animation, cinematic quotation and hints of narrative to trigger emotive positions of discomfort and empathy. Audition evokes a lonely haze of distance through the persistence of repetition. The assembled images comprising After Hours contrast violence with precarious grace and dance delicately between delirious heights and abject depths of experience. Marie—a rotoscoped animation based on Bresson’s …Balthazar—is a brief assaultive animation commemorating its character’s fall from grace while Life Is an Opinion, Fire a Fact, oscillates from despair to serenity while contemplating suicide as depicted by Bresson and Tarkovsky." (Steve Polta, SF Cinematheque,, 2014)

Karen Yasinsky is an artist working primarily with animation and drawing. Her video installations and drawings have been shown in many venues internationally including the Mori Art Museium, Tokyo, P.S. 1 Contemporary Art, NY, UCLA Hammer Museum, L.A. and Kunst Werke, Berlin. Her animations have been screened worldwide at various venues and film festivals including Museum of Modern Art, the New York Film Festival’s Views from the Avant Garde and the International Film Festival Rotterdam. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Baker Award and is a fellow of the American Academy in Berlin and the American Academy in Rome. She teaches at Johns Hopkins University in Film/Media Studies.

Tickets: $10 general; $6 for students/seniors; free for Filmforum members. Available in advance from Brown Paper Tickets at https://yasinsky.bpt.me or at the door.

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Green, Green (a prelude)

Green, Green (a prelude)

2017, 1 min. Los Angeles premiere!

Portrait of Victoria Legrand. Work-in-progress

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I Choose Darkness

I Choose Darkness

2009, 8.5 min.

A meditation on character of Marie in Au Hasard Balthazar by Robert Bresson.

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Enough to Drive You Mad

Enough to Drive You Mad

2009, 2.5 min.

Second of the Balthazar films

The starting point was a still and from there, pure automatism.

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Marie

Marie

Third of the Balthazar films

2010, 6 min.

I went back to the character of Marie but looking to work with the generation of emotion through form rather than narrative. 

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This Room is White

This Room is White

2011, 4 min.

The woman is moving, attending to things, the man watches. Fun products scroll across the screen as a break. We switch lives. The young girl now watches. Actually she has always been watching, bemused. Obvious things go unnoticed but not by her.

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Life is an Opinion, Fire A Fact

Life is an Opinion, Fire A Fact

2012, 10 min.

The point was to go from acts of despair towards some suggestion of serenity. What goes on when we watch horrific events and specifically the horror of suicide that we only watch on tv or film? The act just shows the result but not the ideas and feelings that lead to it. The first image shows a woman who just jumped to her death (from A Gentle Woman by Robert Bresson). The animated scene of self immolation is shot in reverse so narrative buildup of tension is denied. The character places himself atop a statue of Marcus Aurelius from whom the quote, Life is an Opinion, comes. We end in a place, through sound or image, that suggests diverse definitions of serenity (an opinion).

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After Hours

After Hours

2013-14, 9 min.

After Hours originated with thoughts on senseless violence, cultural observation and hypnotism. My meditations on these involve anxiety and a sense of expectation which helped form the structure. Many of the images are repurposed, related but unhinged from their original context. 

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The Perpetual Motion of My Love For You

The Perpetual Motion of My Love For You

2016, 9 min. Los Angeles premiere!

A collage film slipping between narrative starts of images and sounds: May Sarton's snapshots, a resplendent Liz Taylor, internal and external awkwardnesses and a short respite of peace.

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Vera

Vera

2017, 6.5 min.  Los Angeles premiere!

A character created over the time of animating the cobweb and thinking about Mississippi Mud by Bix Beiderbecke. 

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Audition

Audition

2012, 4 min.

The starting point for Audition was the movement of the stripper across the stage in the red light. I rotoscoped the scene and each frame is hand drawn pixels. Once I realized that the sound attached to the source scene was the impetus for the remembered image, the rest of the video revealed itself. Music by Bo Harwood.