A Commemorative Program
Monday, December 1st at 7:00pm, $5
In commemoration of the 25th anniversary of Day With(out) Art on World AIDS Day (December 1, 2014), The Nightingale is pleased to showcase Visual AIDS’ program of newly commissioned short videos by Rhys Ernst, Glen Fogel, Lyle Ashton Harris, Hi Tiger/Derek Jackson, Tom Kalin, My Barbarian, and Julie Tolentino.
“ALTERNATE ENDINGS utilizes the medium of video to highlight diverse voices that bring together charged moments, memories and personal perspectives amidst the public history of AIDS. These seven short videos intersect at a crossroads in which the artists position themselves during the present moment of HIV/AIDS cultural production: looking back at the historic past as they envision divergent narratives and possibilities for the future, because AIDS IS NOT OVER.” (Visual AIDS)Select information on the commissioned videos:
Tom Kalin, Ashes, 2014
For the 25th Anniversary of Day Without Art, Tom Kalin photographed thousands of high resolution still images and “stitched” them into a moving image. While borrowing library books for research on another project, Kalin discovered, glued to the endpapers, ordinary “due date” ledgers stamped with dates spanning three decades. Inspired by these tiny ledgers—like skin or palimpsests that recorded an analogue history, an accumulation of many gestures—Kalin combines quotidian pictures snatched from his daily life with an evocative musical track by ongoing collaborator Doveman (Thomas Bartlett). The film layers dates and moments from Kalin’s personal world with the public and global history of AIDS.
My Barbarian, Counterpublicity, Hd video, 2014, Shot in LA at My Barbarian Studios
My Barbarian’s Counterpublicity is a staged video performance based on an essay about Pedro Zamora, AIDS activist and star of the Real World: San Francisco, written by José Esteban Muñoz in his book, Disidentifications. The three members of My Barbarian re-perform scenes from The Real World in an alienated style, resisting the affect of “reality tv” even as they interrogate its politics, contrasting these scenes with the embodied performance of 90s-inspired music videos, with lyrics adapted from Muñoz’s theory of Queer counterpublic spheres that operate against the dominance of racism and homophobia.
Hi Tiger, The Village, 2014, Digital video, Directed by Derek Jackson, Shot by Rollin Leonard
Hi Tiger, the Portland, Maine based art-punk band fronted by visual artist and performer Derek Jackson, recreates the song “The Village” by New Order. Originally, New Order recorded the song as an upbeat new wave tune in 1982. With Hi Tiger’s re-imagining some 30 years later, The Village becomes a torch song that meditates on themes of love and loss, complicity and defiance. In the context of HIV and AIDS, the song becomes a love letter to those that have passed and a call to arms for the ones who remain.
Julie Tolentino, evidence, 2014 (Special thanks to Abigail Severance & Juvenal Cisneros)
In evidence, Julie Tolentino’s naked, moving body articulates backward on her hands and knees, balancing a cluster of Asian medicine cups. Her self-made sound piece initiates the video with a queer list of loved ones living and lost, recognizable or not, as both invocation and provocation of individuals who deeply shifted her perspective. As the listed names blur and are archived in Tolentino’s body, evidence opens up to the list’s potency through a female, brown, artist/activist body in the unseen yet held spaces of relationship, memory, sex and loss.
More info at www.visualaids.org
Filed under: archival
RUN OF LIFE Experimental
Screening at Constellation
(3111 N. Western Ave.)
Monday, November 17th at 7:00pm
$8 in advance / $10 at the door
Q&A following the movie featuring Cinematographer, Sean Hanley
and Chicago Housing Activist, Mary Tarullo!
Purchase tickets here.
The Nightingale’s Christy LeMaster and Kartemquin Film’s Beckie Stocchetti join forces to present RUN OF LIFE, a co-curated experimental documentary and expanded media series to be held at Constellation beginning September 22nd, 2014 and running every third Monday for nine months through May 2015.
This new series pairs a recent feature experimental documentary with a short nonfiction work in any number of mediums – performance, video short, interactive presentation, audio doc, etc. At each event, a post screening Q&A will be moderated by either a local expert engaged in the movie’s subject matter or an artist involved in the making of the work. RUN OF LIFE seeks to create a space for audiences in Chicago to explore and converse about this important and often under-recognized form of media making: “We aim to investigate experimental tactics within representations of reality; the empathetic connection that is built through sensory experience rather than factual arguments; and aesthetic shifts in documentary that come with the breakdown of the fourth wall.
YOUR DAY IS MY NIGHT: a hybrid documentary by Lynne Sachs
64 min // United States // 2013 // Chinese, English, & Spanish with English Subtitles // HD digital projection
Immigrant residents of a “shift-bed” apartment in the heart of New York City’s Chinatown share their stories of personal and political upheaval. As the bed transforms into a stage, the film reveals the collective history of the Chinese in the United States through conversations, autobiographical monologues, and theatrical movement pieces. Shot in the kitchens, bedrooms, wedding halls, cafés, and mahjong parlors of Chinatown, this provocative hybrid documentary addresses issues of privacy, intimacy, and urban life. Working from the idea that anytime someone is on camera they inadvertently engage in a performance, Sachs asked her subjects to become her collaborators, inviting them to participate in the construction of a film about their lives. In 2012, Lynne began a series of live film performances of Your Day is My Night in alternative theater spaces around New York City. She then completed the hour-long hybrid video which premiered at the Museum of Modern Art in 2013 and screened at the Vancouver Film Fest, Union Docs, the New Orleans Film Fest and other venues in the US and abroad.
LIGHT READINGS by Stephen Vitiello
8 min // United States //2001 //sound piece
WINDOW CLEANING IN SHANGHAI by Laura Kissel
3 minutes // United States //2011 // HD digital projection
Filed under: artist in attendance
Beguiled Cinema presents 3 Documentaries by Lukasz Konopa
Saturday, November 1st at 7:00 pm, $7-10
Polish-born, London-based filmmaker Lukasz Konopa displays an assured dramatic sensibility while employing carefully arranged compositions that invite comparisons to still photography. Reminiscent of the films of Austrian director Ulrich Seidl (IMPORT/EXPORT, the PARADISE trilogy), these three short documentaries approach familiar subjects with a wry, sympathetic perspective that makes us feel as though we’re seeing them for the first time. Konopa makes expert use of digital video to create a visual aesthetic that’s uniquely his own. His images are crystal clear, yet not at all flat, thanks to his expressive handling of natural light–they honor the complexity of real life. Konopa’s storytelling is similarly rich, as his films are at once subtly funny and achingly sad. “Sometimes I think of myself as an alien observing human beings,” Konopa recently remarked while discussing his work at the Chicago International Film Festival. To poignant effect, his films alert us to our distance from what we’re observing and remind us how strange and surprising life can be.
Filed under: documentary
Program Director, David Dinnell in person!
Saturday, October 25th at 8:00 pm, $7-10
The Ann Arbor Film Festival is the oldest experimental fest in the country and is the midwest’s most influential exhibitor of international artist made cinema. As any visit to the festival demonstrates the org serves an enthusiastic local audience and attracts artists and programmers from far and wide. AAFF also supports the genre by presenting a touring program of festival works in the off-season. In October, Program Director, David Dinnell, brings the 52 AAFF 16mm Tour Program to Chicago. Presented entirely on 16 mm, this program features 14 new films from Denmark, Argentina, Canada, Germany, and the United States, including several of this year’s festival award winning pieces.
The Handeye (Bone Ghosts)
(Anja Dornieden and Juan David González Monroy)
Berlin, Germany | 2012 | 7 min
In early 20th century Vienna Robert Musil invited Sigmund Freud to partake in, what he called, “a very special séance.” Seated at the table Musil revealed that they were going to summon the ghost of Franz Anton Mesmer, discoverer of animal magnetism and forefather of hypnosis. Musil told Freud about a series of dreams he had which involved a talking flea. Musil, who had secretly become a follower of the imaginationist school of animal magnetism wanted to question Mesmer as to the meaning of these dreams, in which said flea foretold of impending catastrophes all over Europe. It is said that Mesmer obligingly appeared and spoke in a repetitive and oblique manner. Mesmer’s words were transcribed by Freud in several scraps of paper and hidden sepa- rately in a series of objects that, owing to the vicissitudes of history, would end up in the collections of three Viennese museums. Legend has it that he who could piece together the text would find instructions for the assembly of a film. —AD & JM
Filed under: 16mm
, found footage