Rendered in raw, intimiste strokes, these portraits participate in the paradoxical experience of being an artist with aspirations belonging to this world, as much as beyond.
An exquisite essay on independent filmmaking in India, Shumona Goel and Shai Heredia’s shot-on-16mm I Am Micro has finally been blown up to 35mm — after languishing for far too long on video, as the closures of labs temporarily consigned its fate to a sad irony — allowing us to relish the astonishing beauty of its sulfurous images.
In Class Picture, Filipino artist collective and “photography film” aficionados Tito & Tito converts a single 16mm colour strip into a washed-out 35mm; the sea — like history — swallows but also spawns.
Known for the signature mix of classical-surreal in her startlingly precocious self-portraits, the late Francesca Woodman also created a series of recently revealed videos during her brief but prolific career. This compilation — generously made available thanks to George and Betty Woodman — attests to Woodman’s playful and performative tendencies, which have too often been overlooked by critical mythologizing.
Photographer-filmmaker Friedl vom Gröller has long been documenting her intimate life, including serial self-portraits and those of her family members. Startling in its use of sound (a rarity for this artist), Me too, too, me too (Ich auch, auch, ich auc) is a phantasmal encounter with vom Gröller’s frail, aging mother.
Vincent Grenier’s Waiting Room transforms a dolphin-adorned pediatric ward into pulsating, hot, disembodied yellow rhythms; the disjunction between the fluorescents and the video image resulting in small-scale transcendence.
Nicky Hamlyn’s celestial overture Transis of Venus is one of eleven diptych documents of this astronomical phenomenon, one shot in black in white in the U.K., the other capturing a stunning Italian blush sunset.
Nathaniel Dorsky’s August and After is dedicated to two recently departed friends: legendary filmmaker George Kuchar and actress Carla Liss. The film shows them vibrantly, resiliently alive, shortly before their passing, and then sets off in search of soothing beauty — yielding searing 16mm images awash in colours both belonging to and transcending our natural world. Well into the twilight years of 16mm filmmaking, Dorsky continues to present textures and hues that are indispensible to the art of cinema. We will be poorer without them.