Small gauge: "The spice extends life..."
Partaking in some institutional critique while booting up Chris Marker's Immemory and doing the "Arrakis Walk"
Hello and welcome to Rep Cinema International. This week’s mini newsletter (“small gauge”, get it?) gathers some viewing, listening and a few odds and ends that have passed my way recently. The next interview—with Wakae Nakane and Miryam Sas, co-programmers of “1990s Experimental Film in Japan: Women’s Anarchic Visions of the Everyday”—will be published in the coming days and a full news post will follow next week.
I’d like to start this email by giving some praise yet again to Abby Sun, an artist, programmer and researcher who has rightly been brought into orbit thinking through ideas of institutional critique, its practical purposes and its limits.
The powerhouse Gina Telaroli moderated this fascinating discussion, part of the 59th New York Film Festival, centered on past and ongoing labor movements in cinema. (During my days at the festival, I also witnessed multiple filmmakers and interlocutors shouting out the FLC Union, a relatively recent presence at the institution.) Telaroli was joined by Abby Sun, filmmaker Ted Fendt (whose film Outside Noise screened in the festival), Kazembe Balagun (project manager, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—New York Office), and Dana Kopel (a union worker whose writing I’ve previously linked to).
Sun also took part in a panel at this year’s Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival titled “NOTES”, meant to be a self-reflexive look at our programming of the festival through the internal notes we composed which were made available to guests of the festival to comment on. (Our because I’m one of the festival programmers for BFMAF as well.)
Finally, Sun’s article “Giving Time: Amos Vogel and the Legacy of Cinema 16” for Film Comment brilliantly links the foundational projects of (American) experimental film programming—Frank Stauffacher’s Art in Cinema series and and Amos and Marcia Vogel’s Cinema 16—with developments today, from SFMOMA’s closure of their film program to projects like Chen’s, No Evil Eye Cinema, Black Radical Imagination and NANG.
In praise of the CD-Rom
I appreciated this callback by Marina Hassapopoulou (@EphemeralMedia) to a 2017 article by Ethan Gates on his workflow for presenting “interactive software-based works” (on CD-Rom and DVD-Rom), “Classroom Access to Interactive DVDs”. It includes discussion on what for many (or at least for me) is the defining example: Chris Marker’s Immemory.
The spice extends life… the spice exists on only one planet in the entire universe…
This one-off deep synth oddity from 2015 predates the Villenuve remake, so feel free to listen comfortable in the knowledge that it’s only inspired by Herbert/Lynch Dunezzz.
In praise of film ghost 幽霊 🎥
I always appreciate seeing @spectral_cinema in my feed. They self-describe as: “Ghost. Digital. Fragments of cinema. Mostly experimental. 8mm. Japan. Pinku eiga.”
Rep Cinema International Interviews
In advance of the next round of interviews (and for those who might have subscribed recently), here’s a rundown of past interviews I’ve published previously :
Thanks for reading Rep Cinema International and subscribe to get this newsletter directly sent to your inbox. While the main channel is Substack, you can find Rep Cinema International on Twitter @RepCinemaIntl and on Instagram @RepCinemas. I’ve also made a list of featured films on Letterboxd. Questions, comments or other inquiries: RepCinemaInternational@gmail.com.