Re: looking for good intro text

From: Mark Webber (email suppressed)
Date: Sun Dec 06 2009 - 07:22:44 PST


this sounds something like a book i've been working on for a few
years, and i'm afraid it is still a few years away.

my project is an oral history of the development of 'avant-garde' film
from the 50s to the 70s, predominantly covering the US situation,
which will be told in the words of those directly involved. it is more
of a social / cultural history of the ways in which the films were
made, shown, distributed and discussed rather than a study of the
films themselves.

i've conducted 70-80 new interviews to date. eventually, copies of the
complete interview transcripts and recordings (many of which are 3-4
hours long) will be deposited at archives in new york and london,
where they will be available for other researchers.

details below of a related (free) event in new york this evening. (not
sure if it's just me, but i didn't receive part 1 of the this weeks



New York Gershwin Hotel
Sunday 6 December 2009, at 7:30pm

In the 1960s, filmmakers investigated new forms of production in
dialogue with radical shifts in art, music, performance and popular
culture. Following the example of the Beats, the counterculture was
alive with protest, freedom of expression and the breaking of taboos,
and from the Film-Makers’ Coop to Andy Warhol’s Factory, portable 16mm
cameras were bringing a whole new way of seeing to the cinema screen.
These heady days of “underground film” were captured by Gideon
Bachmann in a spirited broadcast for German television. Rarely seen
today, it is one of the few surviving documents to show aspects of New
York’s independent film community during this exhilarating period.

Gideon Bachmann, 1967, black & white, sound, 51 minutes

Shirley Clarke grows carrots on top of the Chelsea Hotel and meets
Jonas Mekas and Michelangelo Antonioni at the Film-Makers’
Distribution Center. Allen Ginsberg, Susan Sontag and Tuli Kupferberg
protest for peace before being shipped off to the Department of
Correction. USCO freak out in their intermedia church and Maurice Amar
stages a happening at the Movie Subscription Group. Gideon Bachmann
goes on location with Adolfas Mekas in New Jersey, George Kuchar in
the Bronx, and Carl Linder in his bedroom. Bruce Conner dances in a
diner, and Andy Warhol fakes it for television.

Presented by Mark Webber, the Gershwin’s outgoing artist in residence,
who is currently researching an oral history of avant-garde cinema
from the 1950s through the 1970s. Some of those interviewed for the
project will be present.

Free Admission.
Arrive 7:30pm. Screening 8pm.


The Gershwin Hotel
7 East 27 Street (between 5th & Madison)
New York, NY 10016.

Subways: R, W, 6 at 28 St or F, V at 23 St.

On 4 Dec 2009, at 09:02, FRAMEWORKS automatic digest system wrote:

> Date: Thu, 3 Dec 2009 19:25:44 -0800
> From: Bernard Roddy <email suppressed>
> Subject: looking for good intro text
> Greetings, frameworkers:
> Can anyone think of an introductory text that combines a history of
> experimental film and video IN THE U.S. with a strong discussion of
> the history of artists' organizing, writing, and distribution IN THE
> US?
> For Great Britain there's David Curtis' A History of Artists' Film
> and Video in Britain. This has the distinct advantage of combining
> film and video art criticism with strong (and introductory) writing
> about the social history behind production, distribution, and
> critical reception. It includes discussion of "little magazines,"
> the "schooling" of film artists, institutional support for artists'
> work in film such as the Experimental Film Fund and the Arts
> Council, as well as issues motivating and confronting artists'
> organizations like the London Filmmakers' Co-op.
> I'd love to find something like this for the U.S. It would include
> a history of things like Canyon Cinema and the Film-Makers' Co-op,
> Cinema 16 and Anthology Film Archives, in addition to offering a
> critical context for student work.
> Thanks in advance.
> Bernie

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