Onion City Film Festival

Thanks for joining us for 2016! It was a fantastic year. 

 

Onion City Awards:

First Place: Many Thousands Gone
Ephraim Asili

Second Place: Something Between Us
Jodie Mack

Third Place: Mad Ladders
Michael Robinson

 

Honorable Mentions:

Notes from the Interior
Ben Balcom

Aswirl Alight Aight
Tommy Heffron

Azimuth
KaSandra Skistad

Psychic Driving
William E. Jones

Prima Materia
Charlotte Pryce

Occidente
Ana Vaz

Join us next year for the 28th Onion City Experimental Film Festival.

THE 27th ONION CITY EXPERIMENTAL FILM AND VIDEO FESTIVAL

at Defibrillator Gallery (1463 W Chicago Ave) unless otherwise noted

INSTALLATIONS

EATMEALIVE1.jpg

Eat Me Alive So That I May See You from the Inside

Torsten Zenas Burns

2015, 40 min., Looping video in venue basement

 

THE FIELD TRIPS: MEM-PACKET RESPONSE TO THREE DEFORMANCES

The manifestation of clear oozing Grand Hyatt evocational plasmic discharge attached to a willing participants flesh while at the same time a communicorporeal exchange is happening between a humanoidal octopus, reflective face character and unknown pilot flying together in a Piper aircraft high over the city of Holyoke’s canal district. A third entangled vehicle crawls from a pond in Upstate NY and undergoes augmentive medical procedures-we see plastic-like membrane elements slit open at the chest cavity to reveal ambiguous re-imagined biologics…

WUNDERKAMMERN DELIVERY SYSTEM / ORANGE / 21ST CENTURY GRIMOIRE WITH ENTANGLED PICTOGLYPHICA / BORIS / COMMUNICORPILLER / MIRROROID / RE-IMAGINED SHAD ROE / SQUIDNAUTICA / INTERACTIVE BIOLOGICS /  UMBILICOUS-TETHERING / THE ENDLESS SURGERIES / CLEAR AND BLACK PLASMICA / THE CREATURE BED AS DEFORMANCE ENGINE / ROBIN’S EGG BLUE BIO-PORT / CANDY PINK IMMERSION SHELL / EDUCATIONAL SLIME AS COMMUNICATION MEDIUM / KARAMELSUTRA-CORE / OCTO-JELLIES / GUEST CHOREOGRAPHER (FACEHUGGER)

***

 

Animismo Industriale

Anemoi

2014, 4 min., Looping video in venue garage

Leather skins normally used to produce shoes and clothes in the manufacturing industry are stacked on a tripod while actions are being performed on them. These actions want to “infuse life” back into what was a living being before becoming a daily-use com-modity.

Because of its nature, leather is particularly sensitive to thermic variations and it retains heat. This process is made evident in the video through the use of the thermic camera. The actions provide an ironic reading of the industrial reification through “animistic” practices that are in fact very simple daily acts: sitting, breathing, kissing, writing, rubbing, pressing, rolling, standing by, stepping or sleeping over, wearing, etc. These playful rituals want to underline and create a rupture in the circle between nature and artifice, living being and object.

The visual aesthetic also refers to the cinema of the origins and the magic of animating the inanimate.

***

Which Arbitrary Thing Are You

Sara Magenheimer

2014, 7 min., Looping video on view in venue window

A silent, moving poem, this video incorporates the “voices” of a wide variety of text sources into one scrolling script. The majority of the footage was shot through the window of a neighborhood salon that was showing a demonstrational video of their eyebrow threading services. Originally conceived for an exhibition at Cleopatra’s in Brooklyn, NY, this video is meant for a window in a storefront space, ideally viewed from the street in the context of other commercial moving images.

***

Untitled (Wishes, Lies and Dreams)

Sarawut Chutiwongpeti
2015, 2 min., Looping video in venue basement

"A diary entry from Lofoten, Norway."

***

WEDNESDAY

March 2nd @ 8pm

Ghost Algebra bird in tree x.jpg

JANIE GEISER: THE NERVOUS FILMS

at The Nightingale (1084 N. Milwaukee)

***

Cathode Garden

Janie Geiser

2015, 8 min., Video

A young woman moves between light and dark, life and death; a latter day Persephone. The natural world responds accordingly. Neglected negatives, abandoned envelopes, botanical and anatomical illustrations, and found recordings re-order themselves, collapsing and re-emerging in her liminal world. Chicago Premiere.

***

Kriminalistik

Janie Geiser

2013, 4 min., Video

Evidence is scientifically arranged and catalogued, suggesting a corridor to knowledge. Elusive. Crimson.

***

The Nervous Films:

 

Ghost Algebra

Janie Geiser

2009, 8 min., 16mm to video

Sound collage : Janie Geiser

Sound Mix: Kari Rae Seekins

Under erratic skies, a solitary figure navigates a landscape of constructed nature and broken bones.  She peers through a decaying aperture, waiting and watching: the fragility of the body is exposed for what it is: ephemeral, liquid, a battlefield of nervous dreams.

Using found and natural objects, rephotographed video, medical illustrations, and other collage elements, Ghost Algebra suggests one of the original meanings of the word “algebra”: the science of restoring what is missing, the reunion of broken parts. “

***

kindless villian 7 x.jpg

Kindless Villian

Janie Geiser

2010, 5 min., 16mm to video

Sound collage : Janie Geiser

Sound Mix: Kari Rae Seekins

In Kindless Villain, two boys wander through a stone fortress, while the history of never-ending battle forms traces in the waters below.  Seemingly alone in their island world, the boys succumb to fatigue, and to rituals of power.  Scratched phrases from an ancient recording of Hamlet reveal a sad cry for vengeance.  War is a child’s game, played quietly in this forgotten world.

***

The Floor of the World

Janie Geiser

2010, 9 min., 16mm to Video

Sound collage: Janie Geiser

Sound Mix: Kari Rae Seekins

In a shifting landscape of dirt and sky, excavation and construction merge. Figures move back and forth between life and death, and possibly somewhere else. The ephemerality of existence is a mundane question in this world, where numbers mark the way. The floor of the world turns out to be easily pierced, liquid, permeable.

***

Ricky

Janie Geiser

2011, 11 min., Video

Sound collage: Janie Geiser

Sound Mix: Kari Rae Seekins

The realms of childhood, war, and loss echo through Ricky.  A found sound recording forms the spine of the film...a scratched audio letter from father to son.

***

Arbor

Janie Geiser

2012, 7 min., 16mm to video

Sound collage: Janie Geiser

Sound Mix: Kari Rae Seekins

From a set of photographs found in a thrift store, Geiser creates a liminal space between representation and abstraction, figure and landscape, fiction and memory.  ARBOR suggests the fragility and ephemerality of memory and its artifacts through subtle manipulations of the photographs: reframings, layerings, inversions, and the introduction of dimensional elements, including flowers and leaves. The photographs’ subjects rarely engage the camera; they are glimpsed, rather than seen. They look elsewhere, and wait for something inevitable.  Gathering on a hillside, lounging on the grass beyond now-lost trees, the inhabitants of ARBOR cycle through their one elusive afternoon, gradually succumbing to time or dissolving into landscape, reserving for themselves what we can’t know---and becoming shadows in their own stories.

***

TRT: 52 min.

THURSDAY

March 3rd @ 7pm

OPENING NIGHT

Screening sponsor: House of Two Urns

***

Body Contours

Kristin Reeves

2015, 6 min., Video

Make movies in your mind, feel the soundtrack, and drift away from your body for the win. Produced through a media art residency at Signal Culture using real-time analog video processing tools.

***

Something Between Us

Jodie Mack

2015, 10 min., 16mm

A choreographed motion study for twinkling trinkets, beaming baubles, and glaring glimmers. A bow ballet ablaze (for bedazzled buoyant bijoux brought up to boil). Choreographed costume jewelry and natural wonders join forces to perform plastic pirouettes, dancing a luminous lament until the tide comes in.

***

Chromatic

Karen Johannesen
2015, 6 min., Super 8

Color saturated images of flowers forcefully create a sensory optical phenomenon, vibrating on the verge of explosion.

***

Still021 (bats).jpg

Queen Whimsy

Pete Brooks,

2015, 6 min., Video

***

(I) Frame

Karissa Hahn & Andrew Kim

2015, 11 min., 16mm (Flicker Warning)

A video is a stream of information, and this moving image relies upon the relationship of static frames which are algorithmically determined. In the language of video compression, the (I) frames are the reference points between which movement is interpolated. Manual deletion or misplacement of (I) frames results in a video glitch known as a datamosh … the stream of nformation d srupted, d sorgan zed … nterupeted … lost … the ( ) frame removed, rejected … BUT, reclaimed, the (I) frame, the burning bolts of the machine, are at once reasserted in this dance macabre … (I) FRAME is a mechanical ballet set to the original tempo that characterizes motion on screen at 24 (I) frames a second….

***

Andy Warhol’s Schrafft’s Commercial [remake]

Katrina Dixon & Brian L. Frye

2014, 1 min., Video

In November 1968, the Manhattan restaurant chain Schrafft’s hired Andy Warhol to create a television commercial, hoping to make itself look more hip and relevant. Warhol created a one minute long commercial, promoting Schrafft’s new “Underground Sundae,” which Schrafft’s described as, "Yummy Schrafft's vanilla ice cream in two groovy heaps, with three ounces of mind-blowing chocolate sauce undulating within a mountain of pure whipped cream topped with a pulsating maraschino cherry served in a bowl as big as a boat."

Time magazine described the commercial as follows: "Onto the screen flashes a shiny red dot, which turns out to be a maraschino cherry, which turns out to sit atop a chocolate sundae, which turns out to be the focal point for a swirling phantasmagoria of color. All of which, it also turns out, is a 60-second videotape commercial for a venerable Manhattan-based restaurant chain. "The chocolate sundae," proclaims a credit line that rolls diagonally across the TV tube, was "photographed for Schrafft's by Andy Warhol.”

According to Harold H. Brayman: "The screen fills with a magenta blob, which a viewer suddenly realizes is the cherry atop a chocolate sundae. Shimmering first in puce, then fluttering in chartreuse, the colors of the background and the sundae evolve through many colors of the rainbow. Studio noises can be heard. The sundae vibrates to coughs on the soundtrack. 'Andy Warhol for a SCHRAFFT’S?' asks the off-screen voice of a lady. Answers an announcer: 'A little change is good for everybody.'"

And according to Playboy: "His recent widely discussed commercial for Schrafft’s restaurant chain was a long, voluptuous panning shot of a chocolate sundae, with 'all the mistakes TV can make left in,' the artist explained. 'It’s blurry, shady, out of focus.'" Warhol was quite pleased with the results. “‘It's fun,’ he says, ‘and really pretty, really great.’” Apparently, so was Schrafft’s, which claimed, “[W]e haven't got just a commercial. We've acquired a work of art."

Unfortunately, Schrafft’s failed to preserve the commercial, and no known copies exist. Accordingly, on Thanksgiving day 2014, Katrina Dixon & Brian L. Frye recreated Warhol's commercial, to the best of their ability. For the record, the hot fudge is homemade & based on Schrafft's own recipe.

***

Jáaji Approx.

Sky Hopinka

2015, 8 min., Video

Logging and approximating a relationship between audio recordings of my father and videos gathered of the landscapes we have both separately traversed. The initial distance between the logger and the recordings, of recollections and of songs, new and traditional, narrows while the images become an expanding semblance of filial affect. Jáaji is a near translation for directly addressing a father in the Hočak language.

***

Still Life

Kevin Eskew

2015, 4 min., Video

Et tu doggy?

***

Big_Sleep™ Encoding Tool Demo

Evan Meaney & Amy Szczepansi

2015, 7 min., Video

Part software demo, part documentary——big_sleep™ concerns itself with archival impulses, molecular instability, and numbers counting down to zero. This project presents material from the late bill birch, one of the most prolific fox movietone cinematographers. His body of work is molecularly unstable and decaying. since 1980, various media conservators have attempted to digitally preserve these early films and failed—leaving a canon of glitches and a legacy of obsolete formats to the future.

***

Something Horizontal

Blake Williams

2015, 10 min., Video

Flashes of Victorian domestic surfaces and geometric shadows transform the physical world into a somber, impressionistic abstraction, while elsewhere a spectre emerging from the depths of German Expressionism reminds us that what goes up always comes down.

***

Embryo

Luther Price

2015, 12 min., 16mm

***

Grand Finale

Kevin Everson

2015, 4 min., Video

GRAND FINALE is the end of a lovely evening in Detroit. The film was shot on the July 4th weekend, during filmmaker’s artist residency at Media City in Windsor, Ontario. Chicago Premiere

***

TRT: 85 min.

FRIDAY

March 4th @ 7pm

PROGRAM 1

Screening sponsor: Gallery 400

***

Screen Test 1 (self-portrait)

Scott Fitzpatrick

2015, 3 min., 16mm

Laser-printed onto recycled 16mm film.

***

Two Ways Down

Laura Heit

2015, 3 min., Video

Fall into the underworld, walk, slither, wriggle, fly, burn, and return to dirt.

***

Mad Ladders

Michael Robinson

2015,  10 min., Video

"[T]he prophetic ramblings of an unseen narrator recount fantastical dreams of the coming Rapture, as crystalline imagery of rolling clouds gives way to heavily-processed video of moving stage sets from The American Music Awards telecasts of the 1980s and early 1990s. Blooming and pulsing in and out of geometric abstraction, this swirling storm of rising curtains, spinning set pieces, and unveiled pop idols forms an occult spectacle, driven by its impassioned narrator and an 8-bit leitmotif. Like a half-remembered dream of mythology, television, and religion, the film strikes a hypnotic balance between storytelling and free-falling."   -Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago 2015

***

[Con]sensual : A Tribute V1

Shawné Michaelain Holloway

2013, 4 min., Video

[CON]SENSUAL : A TRIBUTE V1 is a digital feminist exploration of the pornographic “tribute” video wherein a typically male, amateur subject depicts themselves masturbating onto a photograph of someone they admire or masturbating with a favorite porn video in the same frame. This video lives uploaded onto the site XTUBE as a love letter to tribute-makers and ebony porn lovers alike, as appreciated by a black female herself.

***

The Bowels of the Universe (with Shining Knees)

Madsen Minax

2015, 3 min., Video

A gender ambiguous, fluid obsessed, magical deity threatens the conditions of human sex with hir all-being solar anus and rhetoric of divine detachment. Every exit is also an entrance. Every hole, a portal.

The short video THE BOWELS OF THE UNIVERSE (WITH SHINING KNEES) uses elements of flicker film and psychedelia, nebulous poetics and feverish sound, to meditate on the nature of inner/outer space, astral travel, past/future divination, screen culture, and the self determined, gender variant body as technological apparatus.

***

Milvinia Returns at the Wrong Time of Year

Clothie Doubles

2015, 10 min., Video

***

Notes from the Interior

Ben Balcolm

2015, 11 min., 16mm

Wandering through the body puzzling out a system of symbols. The trouble is, affect resists signification outright. The inside and outside become muddled when you start to feel your body in relation to an image.

***

Homo Sapiens Project

Rouzbeh Rashidi

2011, 12 min., Video

Rashidi’s HSP: FRAGMENT evokes, like much of his prolific output, the atmospheric unease and suspense of horror cinema removed from its contextual and narrative confines. A man (played by Rashidi himself), inhabits a series of eerie environments.

***

Stick It

Stefan Ramirez Perez

2014, 5 min., Video

The single channel video STICK IT combines television footage of women’s gymnastics with recordings of the artist attempting the same routines. Merging himself and the young gymnasts of the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta into one composite character, he enters an ambivalent position between envy, identification, rejection and critique of these highly controlled bodies and their restricted performative roles. The video follows the preparation and execution of a floor routine, suspending the marginal moment right before the action, encapsulating ambition, the pressure to succeed and the looming possibility of failure.

***

MindPlace ThoughtStream

Shana Moulton

2014, 12 min., Video

***

Dreaming

Stephanie Gould

2015, 4 min., Video

Images from dreams

bloom amid restless movements,

a sleeping portrait.

***

TRT: 77 min.

FRIDAY

March 4th @ 9pm

PROGRAM 2

Screening sponsor: Winnipeg Film Group

***

Romantic Period

Victoria Ruhe

2015, 2 min., Video

Romantic Period gives an abstract but still sensual impression about a period more contradictious than others.

***

Self-Titled (Rough Cut)

Jesse Malmed

2015, 7 min., Video

"'The final structural film. Finally!'

-David Manning, Saugatuck Sentintel"

***

Lunch Poems

Dan Paz

2015, 32 min., Video

Named after a collection of Frank O’Hara poems, Dan’s program is a compilation/essay/collection of audio and video moments that are both considered and casual invitations to listen, observe, navigate and feel. All of Dan’s collected wonderings and wanderings investigate and reframe our daily lives and all of the hurricanes, communities, songs, text conversations, and car rides that fill it. Dan observes the world with the aid of video and audio recorders in order to guide us in paying closer attention to context and details. This tuning of our eyes and ears can lead us to exciting, engaged spaces of curiosity, joy and empathy. To quote a text message quoted in one of Dan’s videos: “realness sounds pretty good.”

***

Bring Me the Head of Tim Horton Evan Johnson

Galen Johnson & Guy Maddin

2015, 32 min., Video

Guided by the spirit of Evan Johnson's Cuadecec Manifesto (which calls for makings-of en masse), Bring Me the Head of Tim Horton is a strange, stirring and anarchic behind-the-scenes look at Paul Gross's new feature, Hyena Road.

***

TRT: 73 min.

SATURDAY

March 5th @ 2pm

PROGRAM 3

Screening sponsor: Piece

***

Untitled (Horse)

Rajee Samarasinghe

2014, 5 min., Video (Flicker Warning)

"A symbiotic collaboration in movie motion. The logic and order intended by Muybridge are destroyed as a means to examine the sublime qualities of the cinema." -RS

***

The Asylum

Prapat Jiwarangsan

2015, 9 min., Video

This place is a shelter for certain people. Those are a disc jockey who lost her job after the coup, a Karen boy who secludes himself due to alien issue and the animals that moan grievously. They all seem like refugees looking forward to liberation.

***

 

Rock Roll

Josh Guilford

2015, 3 min., 16mm

"A camera roll film shot on the coast of Rabbit Island, an islet in Lake Superior three miles east of Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula. Built from sandstone formations dating back over 900 million years, Rabbit Island's coastline harbors traces of staggering geologic activity, conjuring images of ancient highlands, invading seas, and the slow, relentless action of sedimentation and compaction. While thinking about this drama, I charted a loose trajectory across the surface of a single expanse of sandstone at the island's northwest edge. I used my camera to map its diversity of visible forms -- the 'micro-events' of color variations, cracks and divots, distributions of lichens, etc. -- shooting in short bursts so that images might accumulate like falling waves." -JG

***

All Gardens are Haunted

Kaitlin Martin

2015, 5 min., Video

"This is an experimental film I made. I wanted to illustrate the notion of a barely overheard scary story or legend. I filmed the gardens in a way to make them look fluid and otherworldly, a kind of dream place that fears could be projected upon. I shot it all on myiPhone 5c using the aps Hyperlapse and iMotion for the animated parts." -KM

***

Our Eyes are Armed, but We are Strangers to the Stars

Julie Murray

2015, 14 min., Video

"A composition of scenes and sounds in a montage reflecting poetic and musical forms. The camera, a toy, records only in black and white and fairly crudely at that. Its plastic lens softens and distorts pictorial detail, creating room for the mind's eye to roam and query, or not, the nature of image, meaning and attachment." -JM

***

Idyll

Mary Billyou

2014, 6 min., Video

"Fewer families were born, lived, and died in the same place. People, especially young ones, were ready for a new life, as far removed from the old one as possible. Living space was much smaller and there were few, if any, servants. Many wives were working outside the home and leisure was not to be spent doing housework, but in being out of doors as much as possible. Emphasis was on informal living and informal entertaining." -MB

***

Gasometers 2

Nicky Hamlyn

2015, 14 min., 16mm

(light and architectural structure flashing)

Gasometers Part 2 is one of a series of 16mm time lapse studies of disused gas holders in parts of North London. The enormous C19 iron structures supported metal drums containing gas made from coal, which was used for cooking and heating in houses. Now that the UK's gas is purchased directly from Norway and Russia (following the decline of British gas from the North Sea), they have gradually fallen into disuse, as the gas is now channeled directly into a network of pipes. The films are impure 'documentaries' that use the gas holders as an excuse to create studies of light and atmospheric conditions in a part of England that has unique weather patterns.

***

Endless Nameless

Mont Tesprateep

2014, 23 min., Video

"Endless, Nameless is a hand-processed Super 8 film, shot in the private garden of a Thai army officer. The film constructed from the filmmaker’s observations and memories about groups of conscripts who worked in his father's garden. The film was created as a self-hypnosis to reinvestigate his existence." -MT

***

TRT: 79 min.

SATURDAY

March 5th @ 4pm

PROGRAM 4

Screening sponsor: Revolution Brewing

***

fwwfwffw

Yoel Meranda

2015, 1 min., Video

How to make the color bars unfamiliar while using the simplest effects available on an editing software? Decrease the opacity, zoom in, zoom out, rotate, play with the opacity again, etc. There seems to be infinite potential compositions within and a playful illusion of movement is possible with just some rotation. The brain fills the gaps while seeing that there are no gaps. Does the tone also play in the back of our minds?

***


Here There

Alexander Stewart

2015, 5 min., Video

"Here There gives graphic form to memory’s malleable, straying lines. It begins as a traveler’s sketchbook, drawn in Croatia in the summer of 2014, but details soon fade away into abstract impressions on the edges of memory. This film is a reduction to the essence, a condensed feeling of one place and time." -AS
***

 

Still Feeling Blue About Colour Separation

Christine Lucy Latimer

2015, 2 min., Super 8

"This film rephotographs over 200 internet-sourced images of ‘Macbeth ColorChecker’ cards on to super-8mm cyanotype emulsion. Macbeth Cards (precision tools in colour film processing), were a popular accessory for small-gauge Kodachrome filmmakers in the 1970's. They have since been re-adopted by contemporary digital photographers, who use them to compare lighting scenarios on internet blogs and forums. Tracing the

history of the colour calibration card through many lenses, I effectively remove all colours, save one." -CLL

***
 

 

Koropokkuru

Akiko Maruyama & Philippe Roy

2015, 5 min., 16mm

"A moving portrayal of an ineffable force that can be humanlike or embody itself within displayed objects. Inspired by concepts from the Koropokkuru folktale within Japanese Ainu culture and The Invisible Man." -AM

***

Pink Horses, Blue Oceans

Jake Barningham

2015, 8 min., Video

***

Primitive Cinema

Simon Payne

2015, 2 min., Video

"Light into a waiting chamber." -SP

***

 

Azimuth Still 2.jpg

Azimuth

KaSandra Skistad

2015, 12 min., Video

"azimuth, n.

Pronunciation: /ˈæzɪməθ/

Etymology: < French azimut, cognate with Italian azzimutto, Portuguese azimuth, < Arabic as-sumūt, i.e. as = al 'the' + sumūt, plural of samt 'way', 'direction', 'a direction or point of the compass or horizon', and 'the arc extending from it to the zenith'. Compare samt-al-rā's 'the direction or point over head', whence the term zenith.

1. An arc of the heavens extending from the zenith to the horizon which it cuts at right angles; the quadrant of a great circle of the sphere passing through the zenith and nadir, called an azimuth-circle.

2. The angular distance of any such circle from a given limit, e.g. a meridian. Hence, the true azimuth of a heavenly body is, the arc of the horizon intercepted between the north (or, in the Southern hemisphere, south) point of the horizon and the point where the great circle passing through the observed heavenly body cuts the horizon.

3. Horizontal angle, or direction; point of the compass." -KS

***

What am I

Greg Penn

2015, 3 min., Video

‘What am I’ is made up of many photographs. The sounds are taken from field recordings and synth experiments. The work is chopped, layered, stretched and pulled a part until the visual and audio lock together. Like all of my video work ‘What am I’ reaches a limit where thought suspends its constant activity, allowing me to enjoy the moment and be present.

***

MTG_02 copy.jpg

Metropolitan Triangle Garden

Rui Hu

2014, 4 min., Video

"In this experimental 3D animation, Classical sculptures in the museum participate in a destructive performance triggered by software glitches, distortions, and misused simulation, turning the space into a madhouse theatre with both classical beauty and digital chaos. It attempts to connect the sense of space, history, turmoil, and transformation to the idea of technological sublime in a twisted way." -RH

***

Color Bars Experience

Gregory Gutenko

2015, 4 min., Video

"Glitch art. A video color bars test pattern is attacked using a digital time base corrector to disrupt the sync signals that hold the image together. The results are rephotographed off a monitor." -GG

***

Triplete Plástico

Ignacio Tamarit

2015,  2 min., 16mm

"Over the years I painted film strips that for some reason I discarded and stored in boxes. After a while I wanted to give it a new use this material, or at least recycle it. So I started to view and select only the parts that interested me the most of all this footage. So I ended taking 3 frames here, 5 there and collected an entire folder of small frames. This film is like the work of an architect building a building block, by splicing small blocks of frames, looking to collide with one another and form new images. At the same time, this film is an apology to the act of splicing, the aesthetics of the joint. Enjoy the splice of life!" -IT

***

Fugue

Kerstin Schroedinger

2015, 8 min., 16mm

"In music, a fugue is a contrapuntal compositional technique in two or more voices. It builds on a motive that is introduced at the beginning in imitation and recurs frequently in the course of the composition. Fugue (2015) is a formal and physical experiment in order to understand the relationship between image, sound and movement. The movements and the setting are informed by motion studies that were conducted and lmed at the beginning of the 20th century with the aim to use lm making for analysing motions of manual mechanised labour as well as concepts of biomechanics that elaborate the relation between body and mind as a form of actor’s training. In the lm the movements that are recorded are also printed on the part of the lm strip that is read as optical sound by the light sensitive sensor of the projector. What you hear is what you see. Or the image recurs as movement and the movement recurs as sound." -KS

***

About 11 Minutes

Madison Brookshire

2014, 11 min., 16mm

“A musical made of 15,625 frames of continuous material analyzed and interpreted by a machine to produce both light and sound for 10 minutes, 51 seconds.”–Brookshire

***

The Painters

Nicolas Provost

2013, 4 min., Video

"In Long Live The New Flesh Provost adapted a number of horror films. Now he tackles this other genre film. We see drip painters at work, blobs flying around. Form and content spatter from the screen. A film that appears to be modelled out of digital clay, on the borderline between beauty and taboo." -NP

***

TRT: 71 min.

SATURDAY

March 5th @ 7pm

PROGRAM 5

Screening sponsor: Lagunitas

***

Many Thousands Gone

Ephraim Asili

2015, 8 min., Video

"Filmed on location in Salvador, Brazil (the last city in the Western Hemisphere to outlaw slavery) and Harlem, New York ( an international stronghold of the African Diaspora), Many Thousands Gone draws parallels between a summer afternoon on the streets of the two cities. A silent version of the film was given to jazz multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee to use an interpretive score. The final film is the combination of the images and McPhee’s real time “sight reading” of the score." -EA

***

elizabeth wider.jpg

SoundPrint

Montieth Mccollum

2015, 8 min., Video

"'SoundPrint' explores the marks left by sonic frequencies. Imagery from optical soundtracks and micro photography of records play against similar signals received by sand, water, and people. Sounds of the ocean and the Midshipman are the backdrop for a rich exploration of the subtleties of transcribed sound." -MM

***

Objects in a Landscape

Van McElwee

2015, 5 min., Video

"World fragments, loosely connected." -VE

***

What You Thought You Knew / What You Knew You Thought

Stephanie Gray

2014, 4 min., S8

"NY’s secrets full of mystery, color and real or fake memories between dulled sparkles. it’s what you thought you knew, what you knew you thought, what you’ve known, all along. What is the word for a story behind a story behind a story?" -SG

***

Bunte Kuh

Parastoo Anoushahpour & Faraz Anoushahpour & Ryan Ferko

2015, 6 min., Video

"Through a flood of images and impressions, a narrator attempts to recall a family holiday. Produced in Berlin and Toronto, Bunte Kuh is a collaboration between Parastoo Anoushahpour, Faraz Anoushahpour, & Ryan Ferko which combines a found postcard, family photo album, and original footage to weave together the temporal realities of two separate vacations." -PA, FA, RF

***

Season of Wonder

Lisa Crafts

2015, 8 min., Video

"Season of Wonder is a cine-poetic work that intertwines that which I observe with that which I imagine. A perceptual blur arises, where the freakish quietly morphs into the everyday. I am working in the area of unnatural history in a destabilized and intervened world. Cycles of time are disrupted, and loss is complicated with the spark of possibilities." -LC

***

Silk Tatters

Gina Telaroli

2014, 17 min., Video

"A cine-essay that explores holding onto the past as a way to embrace the future, inspired by Vincente Minnelli’s Brigadoon." -Hillary Weston

***

The Neutral Zone

LJ Frezza

2015, 7 min., Video

A survey of the utopias featured in Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-1994). Some structures that influence our understanding of possible futures.” -LJF

***

Psychic Driving

William E. Jones

2014, 15 min., Video

Psychic Driving deals with experiments on unwitting subjects involving hallucinogenic drugs and massive doses of electroshock. One of the subjects, the wife of a member of the Canadian Parliament, speaks out in an interview. The psychiatrist in charge, Dr. Ewen Cameron, treated patients in three stages—sleep therapy, psychic driving, and de-patterning—to destroy depressed personalities and then build them back up again. His funding came from the CIA. The source material of Psychic Driving is a VHS tape recorded from a 1979 television broadcast, and is the only existing copy in the National Archives of the United States. The tape’s degradation inspired frame-by-frame animation involving hundreds of passes of filters in Photoshop.

***

TRT: 78 min.

SATURDAY

March 5th @ 9pm

PROGRAM 6

Screening sponsor: Video Data Bank

 

House and Universe

Antoinette Zwirchmayr

2015, 4 min., 16mm

"The contemplative serenity Antoinette Zwirchmayr creates in House and Universe is offset by notions of restlessness and unease that the images of a dormant, naked young woman – alternatingly shown in a sparse, bright motel room and the blooming desert landscape outside – provide. Shown only in fragments, the sleeper seems blissfully unconnected to her surroundings. Tinged in warm sunlight yet subtly charged with associations of isolation and vulnerability, the film presents a dreamlike, almost hallucinogenic portrayal of a person in a state of transcendence." -AZ

***

Footage

Min Jung Kim

2015, 3 min., 16mm

"The physical length of our body turns into the temporal measurement

on film. In the 16mm world, 1 feet = 40 frames

1 second = 24 frames

100 ft = 4000 frames

100 ft = 166.7 seconds" -MJK

***

The Lamps

Shelly Silver

2015, 3 min., Video

"The Baroness Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven né Plotz, was an unsung member of the Dada Movement. A poet, artist, runaway, and all around public provocateur; she actively did not fit into her historical moment, and like most misfits, suffered for it. Some researchers believe that the Baroness was the artist behind Fountain, the ready-made urinal attributed to Marcel Duchamp. THE LAMPS details her trip to the Naples Archeological Museum in the early 1900’s where she breaks into 'Il Gabinetto Segretto,' a secret room filled with erotic objects from Pompeii. 'The Baroness is not a futurist. She is the future.' Marcel Duchamp" -SS

***

Vaseline

Malic Amalya & Nathan Hill

2015, 6 min., 16mm

***

The Long View

Theodore Kennedy

2015, 6 min., Video

Having read, one writes in a room to save their life. The Long View incorporates video footage from a famous psychologist’s home and narration from a documentary about a man defending himself on death row. Additional computer-generated images depict a staged environment of domesticity.

***

Figuring

Kimberly Forero-Arnias & Billy Palumbo

2015, 12 min., 16mm

"The forms and figures of interaction between two people, performed for and with the camera." -K F-A

***

Una Mexicana Que Fruta Vendía

Lorena Carmina Barrera Enciso

2015, 3 min., 16mm

***

Flesh Island

Jimmy Schaus

2015, 13 min., Video

Land and sea fills them while they fill land and sea.  Flesh connects people and place.  Shot on the Greek island of Syros, featuring sounds and music by Matt Carlson and Mike Cooper.

***

Solitary Acts #4-#6

Nazli Dincel

2015, 25 min., 16mm

#4: "The filmmaker films herself masturbate the object of debate. She hears others claim her body, her habits: those in her conservative surroundings as a child. The viewer claims her as well, by watching her in this private act. She is 9 years old, then 12. She observes popular icons, dismissing the agency of their body, she then rejects

the other, objects outside of her body: with some teenage angst, denies climax to everyone else but herself." -ND

 

#5: "The filmmaker films herself practice kissing with a mirror. She recalls teenage memories of overconsumption, confusing oral fixations that are both sexual (kissing) and bodily (eating). She ends up eating the carrot she is masturbating with, and she feels a sense of cannibalism. The components of the background of the scene are broken down and filmed in extreme closeups. These wave and play with one another: when text is overconsumed it becomes the image by wiping it out, then the image becomes the fabric where the filmmaker physically attaches the film together with fishing line." -ND

 

#6: "This is a feminist critique of the Oedipal complex. The filmmaker recounts an abortion she had in 2009. The aborted child survives and becomes her lover. Her subject is filmed in a private act, complicating what could be an act of the solitary. There are three endings to the film. First is a recount of the child's earliest sexual memory, similar to the filmmaker's. The text is hammered on the film with letter punches. Second is a letter written to the filmmaker from her subject, is read by the filmmaker, the image is punched out with a leather puncher and carefully replaced into blackness not to lose motion. A pop song from 2009 is used, the one the filmmaker heard while driving in the taxi from her abortion. The film concludes by a letter written to the subject by the filmmaker. In this third part the audio is broken apart and the letter is reversed, mimicking the reverse masturbation(the image)." -ND

***

TRT: 75 min.

SUNDAY

March 6th @ 2pm

PROGRAM 7

Screening sponsor: South Side Projections

***

 

Poem

Dan Browne

2015, 4 min., Video

An ode to my daily environment, and the presences of two beings - one newly arrived, the other recently departed. Images cycle and combine into dream-like passages that reveal the infinite potentials of sight within the finitude of everyday objects.


***

Effigy in Emulsion

Karissa Hahn

2014, 3 min., 16mm

"8mm found footage is taped to 16mm clear leader and re-filmed on the Optical Printer.

An artifact from a monumental occasion is examined. A photographer stole a frame of my stolen film! What could be uncovered in this washed out frame? A study in exposure change to un-develop a memory." -KH

***

In Which There Appears Trains, a Carousel, and Rain

Jason Halprin

2015, 10 min., Video

"Collage as pastiche, as modality, as fluidity, as rhyme. Looking back, taking stock, growing up, moving on, keeping it in your back pocket." -JH

***

Old Hat

Zach Iannazzi

2016, 9 min., 16mm, 18fps

"Falling forward one minute, lying down the next" -ZI

***

Etude

Robert Todd

2015, 8 min., Video

"Seeing into and through the light." -RT

***

Two Aries

Josh Weissbach

2015, 4 min., dual S8

"Two Aries that are simultaneously the same and different." -JW

***

Half Human Half Vapor

Mike Stoltz

2015, 11 min., 16mm

"A portrait of a mystic's sculpture garden set against hurricane damage, property foreclosure and a haunted house." -MS

***

Reluctantly Queer

Akosua Adoma Owusu

2016, 8 min., Video

"This epistolary short film invites us into the unsettling life of a young Ghanaian man struggling to reconcile his love for his mother with his love for same-sex desire amid the increased tensions incited by same-sex politics in Ghana. Focused on a letter that is ultimately filled with hesitation and uncertainty, Reluctantly Queer both disrobes and questions what it means to be queer for this man in this time and space." -AAO

***

Jessica

Amy Lockhart

2014, 5 min., Vide

"Jessica is left at home with the baby."-AL

***

Aswirl Alight Aight

Tommy Heffron

2015, 3 min., Video

"We spin without blinking and sing without thinking. Children trance dance. Language dissolves. Light remains."

Part three in a series of reassembled dreams.

***

A Partial History of the Natural World, 1965

Sasha Waters Freyer

2014, 7 min., Video

"A meditative exploration of the violent struggle for independence in southeast Asia and butterfly metamorphosis. Framed by excerpts from Sylvia Plath's poem 'Tulips,' A Partial History of the Natural World, 1965, reminds us that comfort is a privilege and denial of the suffering of others is not an option. With a live 1965 performance of Bartok's Solo for Violin 3." -SWF

***

The Man from Hong Kong

Karen Yasinksky

2015, 7 min., Video

"An internalized collage film which started with the found vacation film someone gave to me many years ago. The script I recorded for the film was resistant but the photographs of Man Ray, Paul Outerbridge and the soundtracks from Bruce Lee films attached themselves. Everyone wants to touch someone." -KY

***

TRT: 77 min.

SUNDAY

March 6th @ 4pm

PROGRAM 8

Screening sponsor: Northwest Chicago Film Society

***

 

Prima Materia

Charlotte Pryce

2015, 3 min., 16mm

“Delicate threads of energy spiral and transform into mysterious microscopic cells of golden dust: these are the luminous particles of the alchemist’s dream. Prima Materia is inspired by the haunting wonderment of Lucretius’s De Rerum Natura. It is an homage to the first, tentative photographic records that revealed the extraordinary nature of phenomena lurking just beyond the edge of human vision.”—Charlotte Pryce

***

Occidente

Ana Vaz

2014, 15 min., 16mm

"A film-poem of an ecology of signs that speaks of colonial history repeating itself. Subalterns become masters, antiques become reproducible dinner sets, exotic birds become luxury currency, exploration becomes extreme-sport-tourism, monuments become geodata. A spherical voyage eastwards and westwards marking cycles of expansion in a struggle to find one's place, one's sitting around a table." -AV

***

Hat Trick

Katherin McInnis

2014, 5 min., Video

"HAT TRICK is a collage film that uses the moon landing (and hoax theories) to examine the role of wonder, luck, and inexplicability in science. The film combines documentation from NASA training programs, on-set stills from the "technically accurate" cult film "Destination the Moon", and other images from the sets of pre-digital filmmaking. In the age of assumed airbrushing, craft, skill, and luck are forgotten parts of illusions (or exploration). HAT TRICK is inspired by both my father's work at NASA, and the performances of my magician friend Danny T." -KM

***

Iron Condor

Meredith Lackey

2015, 10 min., 16mm

"Iron Condor presents the sensible evidence of the Chicago Futures and Options Exchange from grain to data. The film takes its name from an option trading strategy whose profit/loss graph resembles a large bird. Static objects contend with a virtual atmosphere that renders the physical obsolescent." -ML

***

Second Sun

Leslie Supnet

2014, 3 min., S8

"The rising sound of drums emphasizes flashes of lights, images of the solar system and a post-apocalyptic imagining of the birth of our Second Sun." -LS

***

Centre of the Cyclone

Heather Trawick

2015, 19 min., 16mm

“‘In the province of the mind there are no limits. However, in the province of the body there are definite limits not to be transcended’ (John C. Lilly). An invocation for the transcendence from the corporeal to the metaphysical, the passage is guided by marooned sailors, a moment of celestial chance, demolition derbies, and a slipping into the ether.”—Heather Trawick

***

Smooth Surface

Kevin Everson

2015, 3 min., Video

Smooth Surface (2015) is preparing a surface for re-representation.

***

A Distant Episode

Ben Rivers

2015, 18 min., 16mm

"Shot on the otherworldly beaches of Morocco in silvery black-and-white 16mm Scope, Ben Rivers’ A Distant Episode (named for the Paul Bowles short story inventively adapted in Rivers’ feature The Sky Trembles..., also screening in Wavelengths) transforms behind-the-scenes footage into a dreamy film fragment depicting sci-fi incursions into a mythic landscape." -Andréa Picard

***

TRT: 76 min.

 

SUNDAY

March 6th @ 7pm

CLOSING RECEPTION

 

"Meat" Chapter 3

&

Sugar Fractures

Luther Price

2015, various length, slideshow