Conversations at the Edge Spring 2016
March 3 - April 21
Conversations at the Edge is a weekly series of screenings, performances, and talks by groundbreaking media artists. The series is organized by SAIC's Department of Film, Video, New Media, and Animation in collaboration with the Gene Siskel Film Center and the Video Data Bank.
Visit the series blog for artist interviews, bios, additional images, and more!
Otros Usos: Beatriz Santiago Muñoz
2012-15, Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, Puerto Rico, ca. 70 min.
- Thu, Mar 3rd 6:00pm
Puerto Rican artist Beatriz Santiago Muñoz (MFA 1997) draws from anthropology and experimental theater to craft exquisite films about the physical and symbolic histories of the Caribbean. She often collaborates with her subjects--through interviews, reenactment, and play--to uncover the ways the past lives on through the present. She presents a selection of recent films shot in Puerto Rico and Haiti, including a portrait of the Orocovis homestead of eco-pioneer Pablo Díaz Cuadrado, who transforms the city’s trash into sustenance and shelter; an exploration of an ancient indigenous burial ground and recent highway site in Vega Baja; the post-military naval architecture of Vieques; and the busy open air Marché Salomon in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. In Spanish and French with English subtitles. Multiple formats. (Amy Beste)
Wonder: Recent Independent Animation from Japan
2008-15, Various directors, Japan, 75 min.
- Thu, Mar 10th 6:00pm
Over the last decade and a half, a generation of independent animators have redefined "Japanese animation.” Organized by the animation scholar and curator Nobuaki Doi, this program showcases the landscape of independent Japanese animation, including Mirai Mizue’s stunning, hand-drawn cellular phantasmagoria, WONDER (2014); Atsushi Wada’s stylized and surreal look at everyday life, A PIG’S EYE (2010); Kei Oyama’s unsettling photo-collage of adolescent angst, HANDSOAP (2008); and Yoko Kuno’s ethereal and elegiac AIRY ME (2012), originally released on dream pop singer Cuushe’s debut album “Red Rocket Telepathy.” Also on the program are Yoriko Mizushiri’s FUTON (2011), Ryo Hirano’s HOLIDAY (2011), Masanobu Hiraoka’s LAND (2013), ShiShi Yamazaki’s MOONLIT NIGHT & OPAL (2015), and Yoko Yuki’s ZDRAVSTVUITE! (2015). Multiple formats. (Amy Beste)
shawné michaelain holloway: Extreme Submission
2015-16, shawné michaelain holloway, France, ca. 60 min.
- Thu, Mar 17th 6:00pm
In the last four years, Paris-based dirty new media performance artist shawné michaelain holloway (BFA 2013) has established herself as one of the most significant voices online. Her rhizomatic projects explore intimacy, power dynamics, and the technologies that mediate them, taking shape as serialized live Internet broadcasts, video art uploaded to pornographic platforms, GIFs, and electronic music. She returns to Chicago to debut a series of works that examines the role of video and text (or “slow-media”) in meaningful intimate encounters, self-care, and instruction-based performance and their socio-political implications. Multiple formats. (Amy Beste)
Presented in collaboration with RE:MESH.WWWERK/s, a series exploring contemporary New Media Art.
Down Hear: The Films of Mike Henderson
1970-83, Mike Henderson, USA, ca. 75 min.
- Thu, Mar 31st 6:00pm
Best known as a painter and blues guitarist, San Francisco–based artist Mike Henderson produced a remarkable body of experimental and performance-driven films starting in the mid 1960s through the 1980s. Politically charged and often wickedly funny, Henderson’s productions range from improvisational compositions and absurd musings to powerful “talking blues films” about blackness and black experience. Henderson presents a program from across his two decades with the medium, including the hilarious and conceptually pointed DUFUS (1970/1973) and powerful DOWN HEAR (1972), which tells the history of slave shipping through a charged performance by Henderson and his brother Raymond. 16mm restored prints courtesy of the Academy Film Archive. (Amy Beste)
Dana Levy: Impermanent Display
2008-15, Dana Levy, Israel/USA/France, ca. 60 min.
- Thu, Apr 7th 6:00pm
Tel Aviv–born, New York–based artist Dana Levy is known for her symbolically resonant studies of art museums, natural history collections, and other sites of preservation. Her careful choreography meditates on the political and environmental histories that undergird their display, often highlighting processes of migration and displacement. She presents a selection of works shot at the Mazor Mausoleum archaeological site in Petah Tikva, Israel; Maison de l'Armateur in Le Havre, France; and Invertebrate Zoology department of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, PA, in addition to a series of new films created as part of a residency in the Everglades National Park.
Presented in collaboration with the Video Data Bank.
Deborah Stratman: The Illinois Parables
2016, Deborah Stratman, USA, 60 min.
- Thu, Apr 14th 6:00pm
"16mm cornucopia of streams of higher consciousness ... rich with imaginative, suggestive raptures and ecstatic banalities." – Ray Pride, Newcity
"A striking poetic meditation on various Illinois histories ... a beautiful riddle of an achievement." – Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
For the last 25 years, Deborah Stratman (BFA 1990) has explored the landscape of our national history and psyche in riveting films, sculpture, sound, and public works. With THE ILLINOIS PARABLES, she turns her attention to the “American microcosm” and its storied past. Bracketed by sweeping aerial shots of the state’s ancient prairies and waterways, Stratman spins eleven tales of natural disaster, messianic devotion, technological breakthrough, government resistance, and unsolved mystery. Together, these stories ask how the systems of belief they represent have shaped how we see the land, ourselves, and our nation. 16mm. (Amy Beste)
Lyra Hill: Three Performances
2014-16, Lyra Hill, USA, ca. 60 min.
- Thu, Apr 21st 6:00pm
Comics artist and filmmaker Lyra Hill (BFA 2011) produces spectacular performances that mix psychedelia with fantastic tales of self-discovery, the body, and the mysteries of nature. She uses multiple film projectors, looping audio effects, and pulsating hand-drawn images to create super-sensory environments of light, color, and sound. For this event she will present three pieces, including Breathe With Cube (2015), a "comedy trance" featuring an anaglyphic 3D cube that pulsates, grows, and splits in two; Cat Tongue (2014), a tale of sexual exploration and heavy machinery; and a new piece, created especially for the Gene Siskel Film Center, that meditates on "the end" with drawings animated by three alternating slide projectors.