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ALTERNATIVE PROJECTIONS: EXPERIMENTAL FILMS IN LOS ANGELES, 1945 - 1980

Synopsis:

SATURDAY, JANUARY 7TH TO WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 14TH

Co-ordinated by Los Angeles Filmforum

Geographically and artistically, experimental filmmakers in Los Angeles have always operated in and around the center of the commercial filmmaking industry, against which their particular visions are inextricably measured and immeasurably absorbed. This stratified cultural geography has birthed many disparate experimental film movements over time and one of the most interesting of all occurred during the post-WWII period. To aid in creating a more complete picture of this previously fragmented history, the goal of this series is to expand understanding of how experimental filmmaking evolved in L.A., and to contextualize its place in post-war art history.

Film series curated by Adam Hyman and Mark Toscano, with additional contributions by David James, Christine Panushka, Jerri Allyn, Abraham Ferrer, Terry Cannon, Ben Caldwell, Stephanie Sapienza, Amy Halpern and more. For more info, visit the Alternative Projections website!

NOTE: Filmforum members also get free admission to all Alternative Projections shows. Students/seniors - $6 admission. To receive your free or discounted rate for online pre-sales, you must purchase your ticket(s) online ahead of time, and you will receive your discount back in cash at the box office before the show.

"Alternative Projections: Experimental Film in Los Angeles, 1945-1980″ is part of "Pacific Standard Time: Art in LA 1945-1980″, an unprecedented collaboration, initiated by the Getty, that brings together more than sixty cultural institutions from across Southern California for six months (beginning October 2011) to tell the story of the birth of the L.A. art scene. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty. The presenting sponsor is Bank of America.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 7TH AT 5:00PM

WALLACE BERMAN'S UNDERGROUND:

In the mid-1960s, underground wunderkind and collage art luminary Wallace Berman became the true nerve center of a brilliant kind of social assemblage, inspiring and communing with a close-knit circle of actors and artists who screened their underground films domestically among a group of Topanga Canyon bohemians. These films (made by folks with their ears to the ground of the L.A. scene like Bruce Connor, Dean Stockwell and Russ Tamblyn) were influenced by Berman's spiritualist and radically amateur concepts of art, in which sculpting out of woodscraps later gave way to pioneering photocopy works and the now-legendary mail art publication Semina. Tonight's program features the world premiere of Bruce Conner's edit of Dean Stockwell's film Pas De Trois, and visits with Berman's friends and collaborators to explore the fascinating intersection among art, Hollywood, and the institutions of the semi-commercial underground! Show curated by Rani Singh and David E. James

FILMS (Programs subject to change):

ALEPH
Dir. Wallace Berman
1956-66, 16mm, color, silent, 6 min.

"This film took a decade to make and is the only true envisionment of the sixties I know." - Stan Brakhage

A DANCE FILM inspired by JIM MORRISON
Dir. Toni Basil
1968, 16mm, color, sound, 2 min.

Perhaps the first film to combine classical dance with dancing of "the street."

BREAKAWAY
Dir. Bruce Conner
1966, 16mm, color, sound, 5 min.

A dance film viewed twice (once forward, once backward) in five minutes, featuring Toni Basil.

PAS DE TROIS
Dir. Dean Stockwell
1964, 16mm B&W transferred to video, 8 min.

World Premiere of Bruce Conner's edit (courtesy of the Conner Family Trust, Dean Stockwell, and Toni Basil.) The only film showing Bruce Conner at work, making Breakaway. This never-before-screened utterly unique document is perhaps the only film of Dean Stockwell's to survive.

FIRST FILM
Dir. Russ Tamblyn
c. 1966, ~8 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

A fast-paced view of the times and activities of Russ Tamblyn, largely edited in camera.

RIO REEL
Dir. Russ Tamblyn
1968, 6 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

Similar in style to First Film; Tamblyn films a journey to Rio.

Selections from TOPANGA ROSE
Dir. George Herms
1960s, film transferred to video, color, 22 min.

This selection of ethereal home movies, shot in and around Topanga Canyon paints a rich portrait of Los Angeles as it once was. Feat. footage of the Birds of Chaos sculpture, Neil Young's wedding, and a protest at the construction of a trailer park.


IN PERSON: (Schedules permitting) Toni Basil, Tosh Berman, Russ Tamblyn, & George Herms will all be at the Cinefamily in person to help celebrate Wallace Berman's legacy and influence!!!

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members. Filmforum Members get free admission to all Alternative Projections shows. Students/Seniors $6 admission. To receive your free or discounted rate for online pre-sales, you must purchase ticket/s online ahead of time, and you will receive your discount back in cash at the box office before the show.


Breakaway (excerpt) from Cinefamily on Vimeo.





SATURDAY, JANUARY 14TH AT 5:00PM

INDUSTRY TOWN: THE AVANT-GARDE & HOLLYWOOD

Tonight's eruptive experiments come courtesy of filmmakers whose works play explicitly with the commercial film industry (Hollywood and beyond), parodying and often willfully mutating its staid structures, inverting the intended messages of classic and not-so-classic films by using familiar signifiers as raw material. The program kicks off with a brazenly cynical 1928 silent shot by Citizen Kane cinematographer Gregg Toland, then jumps into the '60s/'70s counter-culture with Peter Mays' hallucinatory dream screens, George Lucas' auspicious abstract docu-poem 6-18-67, conceptual collage legend John Baldessari's rare and cryptic Title, and more!

FILMS:

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF 9413: A HOLLYWOOD EXTRA
Dirs. Robert Florey, Slavko Vorkapich & Gregg Toland
1928, 16mm or 35mm, B&W, silent, 11 min.

DEATH OF THE GORILLA
Dir. Peter Mays
1966, 16mm, color, 16 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

6-18-67
Dir. George Lucas
1967, 5 min.

TITLE
Dir. John Baldessari
1971, 16mm, b/w & color, sound, 20 min.

CUE ROLLS
Dir. Morgan Fisher
1974, 16mm, colour, sound, 5:30

ZEBRA SKIN CLUTCH
Dir. Cynthia Maughan
1977-78, B&W, 2:03

BASED ON ROMANCE
Dir. Bruce & Norman Yonemoto 1979, 24:15

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members


Life and Death of 9413 (excerpt) from Cinefamily on Vimeo.





WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 18TH AT 8:00PM


PSYCHEDELIC VISIONS & EXPANDED CONSCIOUSNESS

Hyperkinetic experimental film and animation in the late '60s and early '70s both echoed and informed the volcanic psychedelia that defined those years - and the filmmakers featured in tonight's show created challenging, gorgeous work during that era through obsessive mastery of groundbreaking techniques. Chick Strand's solarized synchronicities, Pat O'Neill's optically-printed densely haptic experiments and Adam Beckett's infinite ecstatic morphs all manage to alter minds, both addled and unaided. The care that went into the films of tonight's sizeable collection of visionaries cannot be overstated, and their influence is a testament to the potent revolutions that originated in obscurity, but still resound in our collective consciousness.

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members

Lapis (excerpt) from Cinefamily on Vimeo.





SATURDAY, JANUARY 21ST AT 5:00PM

LOS ANGELES OBSERVED

Alternate Visions of Los Angeles!

If Thom Anderson's 2003 celluloid essay Los Angeles Plays Itself explored the way Hollywood trained thousands of lenses upon its fragmented topography over the course of a century, tonight's program uncovers how alternate visions of L.A. were executed by several generations of experimental filmmakers. Apt that Anderson's own contribution to the oeuvre, 1966?s Olivia's Place, will be screened alongside a saturated roster of unconventional documentaries, avant-garde ethnographies and rare films that capture landscapes turned on their fractured heads. Beautifully restored prints showcase William Hale, Baylis Glascock and other artists whose takes on their surroundings were carried out with a palpable awareness of truth?s often lovely precariousness in non-fiction.

FILMS:

MUSCLE BEACH
Dirs. Joseph Strick & Irving Lerner
1948, 35mm, B&W, 9 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

GRAND CENTRAL MARKET
Dir. William Hale
1963, 16mm, B&W, 10 min.

CITY CITY
Dirs. Duane Kubo & Donna Deitch
1974, 16mm, color, 11 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

SHOPPERS MARKET
Dir. John Vicario
1963, 16mm, color, 22 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

OLIVIA'S PLACE
Dir. Thom Andersen
1966/74, 16mm, color, 6 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

BUNKER HILL
Dir. Kent MacKenzie
1956, 35mm or 16mm, B&W, 18 min. Print courtesy of UCLA Film & TV Archive

EXCERCISE NO. 1
Dir. Baylis Glascock
5 min.

VENICE PIER
Dir. Gary Beydler
1976, 16mm, color, 16 min. Restored print from the Academy Film Archive

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members



SATURDAY, JANUARY 28TH AT 6:00PM

OPTICAL MANIPULATIONS

**Description coming soon...

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members



WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 15TH AT 8:00PM

ROCK & ROLL EXPERIMENTS

**Description coming soon...

TICKETS: $10/Free for Members



 

Genre:

Experimental / Avant Garde