Artists on Camera,
Program 6: Women/Artists/
Director: Various dirs.
1968-1976 / 93 min
Q&A with filmmakers Martha Edelheit, Rosalind Schneider and Olga Spiegel moderated by Chelsea Spengemann, and Sara VanDerBeek
Last streamed on Mon, Aug 23
This program is curated by Rosalind Schneider, the founder of Women Artist Filmmakers, and Martha Edelheit, one of the original members. The unique factor in creating WAF was to discover, support, and celebrate women artists who make films. These works grew from an expanded vision related to painting and incorporate experimental coupling of images with movement, sound, and music. This series commemorates the group’s contribution to the 1975 week of art and performance “Woman Artists Here and Now,” which opened August 23, 1975, at Ashawagh Hall in Springs, Long Island. Six of the 15 films that were screened at the initial presentation are included.
Selfportrait (Maria Lassnig, Austria/USA, 1971, 5 min) Lassnig, or more precisely her head drawn with felt-tip pen, sings in English with a heartrending Austrian accent about her life, dreams, and eternal search for a male partner. But whenever “the better half” appears, he calls her “weak” and “woman” in the same verse.
Lil Picard, Art Is a Party (Silvianna Goldsmith, USA, 1975, 13 min) A delightfully funny picture of Lil Picard’s 75th birthday party. All of the “art world” is there, and as the evening (and the film) go on, it gets faster and drunker.
Sno-White (Crimson) (Martha Edelheit, USA, 1973, 7 min) A sequel to Edelheit’s 1973 video installation/performance piece, The Albino Queen and Sno-White in Triplicate, conceived as an ongoing, endless American fairy tale—a visual, sensual dream. Filmed in the artist’s studio with footage and sound from Spain and the Hoover Dam.
Plumb Line (Carolee Schneemann, USA, 1968-71, 14 min) The dissolution of a relationship unravels through visual and aural equivalences. Schneemann splits and recomposes actions of the lovers in a streaming montage of disruptive permutations: 8mm is printed as 16mm, moving images freeze, frames recur and dissolve until the film bursts into flames, consuming its own substance.
Depot (Susan Brockman, USA, ca. 1975, 10 min) The “female” waiting for her “train,” in 19th-century and art-deco nude poses. Filmed on a single set, with humor, tenderness, and yearning
Circles II (Doris Chase, USA, 1972, 14 min) A dance/sculpture film that explores new dimensions in color and space. The action develops like a fugue with dancers moving through themes that are repeated with variation and multiplication.
Wings of Thought (Olga Spiegel, USA, 1976, 9 min) An experimental color film including double exposures and abstract images.
Parallax (Rosalind Schneider, USA, 1973, 21 min) Pictorically similar to an enormous fresco, Parallax moves its characters through a dance without time and perhaps without end.
Presented by Soft Network. Series co-programmed by Jason Evans with Soft Network. Photos, top to bottom: Plumb Line, Parallax, and Selfportrait.