A Supplement to Rules, Tools and Fools
The Nightingale Cinema, 1084 N. Milwaukee
Sunday, September 18th, 8 pm, $7-10
A selection of shorts surrounding not just the the how-to but to-how. Bearing fully in mind the notion of utopia as a no-place, Difficult but Possible animates the notion of a diffuse set of not-yet-places, of worlds unbuilt, of worlds unbuilding, of the crazy-eyed mirage we keep moving toward. Together, we explore terrains fantastical, domestic, speculative and utopian; we learn to dodge the camera all around us and to stare deeply into and through others; we receive allegories from beyond underground weather and beyond Drop City, venture into cited non-sites and pick up some skills along the way.
Co-presented by Spudnik Press, in conjunction with Rules, Tools and Fools,
curated by Jaclyn Jacunski and Jason Pallas;
made possible through the generosity of the Chicago Film Archives,
and the sense of possibility and adventure of the artists
Programmed by Jesse Malmed
Mike Lopez | Whole Earth Land | 2016 | 10 minutes | Playthrough Performance
Gene Bernofsky | 1993 | 1980 | 9 minutes | 16mm to Video | Sound
JoAnn Elam | The Last Whole Earth Catalog | 1967-1990 | 20 minutes | 8mm to Video | Silent
Jillian Mayer | Makeup Tutorial – How to Hide from Cameras | 2013 | 3.5 minutes | Video | Sound
Sam Green | Clear Glasses | 2008 | 4 minutes | Video | Sound
Jennifer Proctor | Alternative Forms of Energy | 2005 | 5 minutes | Super 8 to Video | Sound
Ben Russell | Trypps 7 (Badlands) | 2010 | 10 minutes | S16mm to Video | Sound
Filed under: archival
, new media
, social justice
Tracers/Nightingale Media Series #002:
WOMEN’S WORK with Beth Capper
CHOCOLATE CAKE by JoAnn Elam (1973)
Sunday, June 28, 5 pm, Free
The Nightingale Cinema, 1084 N Milwaukee, Chicago, IL
TRACERS is teaming up with The Nightingale for a monthly media series featuring readings, scholars, films, moving pictures, music, meditation, performance, and lively discussion around topics of contemporary feminism. Over the course of the year, this series presents a body of texts and media designed to promote broader feminist discourse beyond the institutional setting. Your new feminist library starts here. Unless otherwise noted, these events are family friendly and FREE.
Second on our docket is WOMEN’S WORK. To create an event that is part book club/screening/discussion group, we invited media scholar Beth Capper to chose a contemporary feminist text to explore. She will introduce major concepts from The Problem With Work: Feminism, Marxism, Antiwork Politics and Postwork Imaginaries by Kathi Weeks and present a screening of work illustrative of its themes. Reading the book isn’t required to participate. The event is modular and meant to work as as introduction to texts and issues that can be explored further.
Chocolate Cake by JoAnn Elam
Killing Time/Fannie’s Film by Fronza Woods
Bessie Cohen, Survivor of 1911 Shirtwaist Fire by Hope Tucker
Conductor/Collaboration #3 by Ei Jane Janet Lin & Miao Jia Xin
Beth Capper is a PhD student in modern culture and media at Brown University, where she works at the intersections of feminist media and performance. Her work on the filmmaker Shirley Clarke’s 1970’s media workshops has been published in Art Journal. She is currently a co-organizer of the Providence-based film and video series Magic Lantern Cinema.
Check out Kathi Weeks’ book here.
Chocolate Cake screening courtesy of Chicago Film Archives
Killing Time/Fannie’s Film made available through the support of Women Make Movies. For more information or to book a film, visit www.wmm.com.”
EXTENDED RAEDING LIST
Silvia Federici, Revolution at Point Zero: Housework, Reproduction, and Feminist Struggle
Maria Mies, Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale: Women in the International Division of Labor
Leopoldina Fortunati, Arcane of Reproduction: Housework, Prostitution, Labor, and Capital
Premilla Nadasen, Welfare Warriors: The Welfare Rights Movement in the United States
Angela Y. Davis, “The Approaching Obsolescence of Housework: A Working Class Perspective,” Women, Race and Class
Selma James and Mariarosa Dalla Cosa, Sex, Race and Class: The Perspective of Winning 1952-2011
Jennifer Morgan, Laboring Women: Reproduction and Gender in New World Slavery
Del Re, Alissa. “Women and Welfare: Where is Jocasta?” in Radical Thought in Italy: A Potential Politics.
Federici, Silvia. Caliban and the Witch: Women, The Body and Primitive Accumulation.
Fortunati, Leopoldina. Arcane of Reproduction: Housework, Prostitution, Labor and Capital.
Filed under: archival
, Free Screening!
Multimedia Methods and
Presented by the Subconference of the
Annual Meeting of the AAG
Wednesday, April 22, 6 pm, $7-10
The Nightingale Cinema, 1084 N Milwaukee, Chicago, IL
Join us for an evening of discussion and excerpts from four films with four documentarian-geographers. In coordination with the Subconference of the Association of American Geographers’ annual meeting, this event will provide an opportunity for an off-site, trans- and non-disciplinary, multi-method mingling of idea makers and media makers. While exploring different content in different geographic settings, the four panelists’ pieces take up the overlapping themes of economic, state, and extra-judicial violence amidst the quest for endless accumulation and surplus. The works explore the the prison and military industrial complexes, contested spaces of ‘urban renewal,’ and sites of accumulation and abandonment ranging from the body to the Mojave Desert to the city of Detroit and beyond. We will gather to discuss process-oriented questions about filmmaking and public scholarship for liberatory social change. The event will comprise a panel discussion with the four filmmakers (Elizabeth Knafo, Amanda Matles, Alexis Mitchell, and Brett Story) moderated by Annie Spencer, as well as excerpts from their latest films. We will reserve ample time for audience discussion.
Rare Earth (2014) // Elizabeth Knafo
From the Mojave desert, to the Pacific seabed, to the surface of the moon, the rush for rare earth minerals is afoot. “Rare Earth”explores the re-opening of an historically toxic rare earth mine in the California desert, and the intensifying land rush for the high-tech minerals across the world. The work is a portrait of changing desert landscapes and the residents who grapple with the impacts of industrial mining. “Rare Earth” traces the toxic and transformative legacy of treasure hunting in the American West—a legacy of speculation, produced scarcity and the social violence of resource extraction—deepening in our era of global climate change.
Rerooting the Motor City: Notes on a City in Transformation (2013) // Paper Tiger
This is Detroit as seen by Paper Tiger Television members, Maria Byck, Amanda Matles, Nadia Mohamed, Adrienne Silverman. From food deserts, to the plans to “rightsize” the city, Detroiters resist, rework, and remain resilient given the social and ecological failures of post-industrial global capitalism. With a critical lens on race and class dynamics, this documentary weaves together segments on Detroit’s labor history, the roots of Detroit’s urban agriculture movement, a critical look at philanthro-capitalism and its relationship to urban renewal, as well as media (mis)representations of a city in transformation.
STEALTH (2014) // Chase Joynt and Alexis Mitchell
By merging hidden camera footage from a patient’s hysterectomy, with interviews of the objects used in these procedures and spaces, STEALTH poignantly and humorously mobilizes ‘sousveillance’ to subvert the perspective of surveilling machinery. Through a triangulation of corporeal, medical and military technologies, STEALTH provocatively points to previously unexplored histories and relationships between inanimate objects and human bodies.
EMPIRE SYMBOL OR, A MAN AND HIS MULE(2015) // Bambitchell (Alexis Mitchell & Sharlene Bamboat)
Empire Symbol, Or A Man and his Mule, traces the journey of a Canadian veterinarian who was responsible for transporting mules from New York to Karachi, India during WWII. Employing his diary entries, Bambitchell unearth both the psychic life of The Vet, as well the histories of Canadian Militarism that are embedded within mundane processes of global trade and transport.
The Prison in Twelve Landscapes (in progress) // Brett Story
The Prison in Twelve Landscapes is a non-fiction work about the prison from the places we least expect to find it: the front yards, public spaces, and social rituals of everyday life. A meditation on the prison and its geographic disappearance in the era of mass incarceration, the doc unfolds as a cinematic journey through a series of landscapes across the United States where prisons do work and affect lives: an anti-sex offender pocket park in Los Angeles, a congregation of ex-incarcerated chess players shut out of the formal labor market, the overnight buses that carry visitors to far away prisons, an Appalachian coal town betting its future on the promise of prison jobs, and a host of other unexpected spaces.
The event is happening in collaboration with the Subconference of the Annual Meeting of the AAG. The Subconference was created to offer a space for radical academics and activists to think critically and creatively about the connections between academic geography, higher education, and social/political change. The subconference is an evolving ambition. Each year we seek out new ways to creatively appropriate the critical mass of the AAG, using the space of the conference as an asset for forging solidarities and facilitating collective exchanges between people who are already engaged in radical, socially transformative work in all the disparate locations that we come from.
Annie Spencer, curator of A GEOGRAPHER’S LENS, is a writer, organizer, media maker, and doctoral candidate in economic geography at the City University of New York Graduate Center. Spencer’s work examines state improvement schemes, accumulation, addiction, and everyday wageless life in the post-American century.
Filed under: archival
, found footage
, new media
YouTube and Avant-Garde Cinema
A Talk by Colin Beckett
Saturday, June 28th at 8:00 pm, $7-10
The vernacular video forms that have emerged on YouTube and other online services over the last eight years frequently bear striking resemblance to the non-narrative strategies that have constituted the history of avant-garde film and video.
While many critics and scholars have noted the resemblance, the implications for the cinematic avant-garde have gone largely unconsidered. As non-narrative internet videos begin to eclipse commercial cinema in viewership and cultural influence, the rise of YouTube might be seen, from one angle, as a covert triumph for the avant-garde. But if this is the case, these developments also initiate a crisis for experimental cinema, liquidating the relations that have structured it and calling into questions claims made on the behalf of its ideological force.
This lecture, illustrated with internet videos, asks how the new preeminence of non-narrative and fragmentary video forms recasts the history of avant-garde film and video and what sort of space it leaves for contemporary avant-garde moving image practice–particularly one geared toward an emancipatory politics. (CB)
Colin Beckett is a writer based in Brooklyn New York. His work has appeared in BOMBblog,The Brooklyn Rail, Cineaste, Moving Image Source, Idiom Magazine, The L Magazine, and wuxia.
Programmed by Christy LeMaster
Filed under: animation
, artist in attendance
, found footage
, new media
and BETTER THAN MICHAEL BAY: HIGHLIGHTS FROM
THE AMATEUR ARCHIVE OF TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION
Kevin B. Lee in Person!
Friday, June 20th at 8:00 pm, $7-10
Transformers: Age of Extinction, the fourth installment of the Transformers franchise directed by Michael Bay, will be released June 27 2014. But on YouTube one can already access an immense trove of production footage recorded by amateurs in locations where the film was shot, such as Utah, Texas, Detroit, Chicago, Hong Kong and mainland China. Transformers: the Premake turns over 300 YouTube videos into a critical investigation of the global big budget film industry, amateur video making, and the political economy of images. The Premake by Kevin B. Lee utilizes a desktop documentary technique that acknowledges the internet’s role not only as a boundless repository of information but as a primary experience of reality, and depicts the process in which we use it to explore the world. In a blockbuster cinema culture rife with insipid remakes of franchise properties, The Premake presents a critical counter-image in which personalized digital media asks what Hollywood is really doing in the world.
Filed under: found footage
, new media
LET EACH ONE GO WHERE HE MAY
From Suriname, A Film in Thirteen Shots
By Ben Russell
Presented by Giles Fielke
“Let Each One Go Where He May” by Ben Russell
Thursday, October 17th at 7:00pm, $7-10
A one-off screening of Ben Russell’s 2009 epic, Let Each One Go Where He May, introduced by arts researcher Giles Fielke, who will discuss the strategies and visions induced in the film by invoking turn of the 20th century German astro-art-historian Aby Warburg. Warburg’s idiosyncratic atlas of images, dedicated to Mnemosyne herself, opened the door to emotional formulations of the image as an agent of cultural survivals, and suggested ways to encounter these icons from the gaps between their information. Russell’s film seems to be in secret agreement, but what would that mean?
Let Each One Go Where He May (2009), 16mm, colour, sound, 135′”
Let Each One Go Where He May is the stunning feature debut of celebrated Chicago-based filmmaker Ben Russell. Having its world premiere in Toronto, the film traces the extensive journey of two unidentified brothers who venture from the outskirts of Paramaribo, Suriname, on land and through rapids, past a Maroon village on the Upper Suriname River, tracing the voyage undertaken by their ancestors, who escaped from slavery at the hands of the Dutch 300 years prior. Shot almost entirely with a 16mm Steadicam rig in thirteen extended tracking shots, this cartographic portrayal of contemporary Saramaccan culture is a rigorous and exquisite work that partakes in and dismantles traditional ethnography, inviting anachronism and myth-making to participate in the film’s daring conflation of history.” – Andréa Picard, TIFF
Giles Fielke is a writer and researcher from Melbourne, Australia. He is attempting to write a history of the constantly failing visual grammars of modern memory theatres and idio-text.
Filed under: experimental