A-J, Pages 8-24
THE FUNNEL: FILM AND RELATED WORK
Blaine Allan works in both filmmaking and film studies. He has published articles on film and film theory in several journals, including Film Reader, Cine-Tracts, and Parachute. He has written a book-length reference guide to the work of filmmaker Nicholas Ray and is currently compiling an encyclopaedia of Canadian television programs. He has studied at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. His doctoral dissertation, to be completed in 1984, examines the relations of the beat generation and independent film in the late 1950s, setting the experimental cinema into socio-political and cultural contexts.
Blaine Allan's films are informed, but not confined, by his extensive background in theory and criticism. They appeal to and work against patterns of perception. Their themes include our desire to turn experience and memory into patterns and narrative.
Living and working in Kingston, Blaine Allan has been an active member of the Eastern Ontario Film Cooperative and has helped promote experimental film through programs at the National Film Theatre and at the Kingston Artists' Association.
YUKON POSTCARDS (1983, Black and White, Colour,
16mm, 18 minutes, Sound)
"In Yukon Postcards I was concerned with the ways we construct stories to order our experiences and memories. Experience and memory are ongoing processes, without boundaries. However, we edit and organize on narrative principles in order to share our history and to make events meaningful to ourselves." B. A.
The film engages the audience in a process that mirrors its construction. The stories and pictures, and the structure of the film itself invite a deciphering and piecing together of the traces of real events from another time and place.
With Sarah Kobs, Tracey Alexander and David Obermeyer.
David Anderson received his training in drawing and painting in Amsterdam and Toronto. He continues to paint and has extended his graphic work to the production of xerox installations and one-of-a-kind books. Toronto audiences are familiar with Anderson's work through his exhibitions at Gallery Quan, YYZ Gallery and the Chromazone Gallery, the site where New Image Painting emerged as a movement in Toronto.
His film work developed at least partly as a result of his proximity to the work of his brother James, and Keith Lock. As well David Anderson and Lock were responsible for managing a series of film screenings entitled `New Films' in their studio on Adelaide Street in Toronto in 1977. The energy and audiences from the studio screenings joined forces with the Funnel.
Anderson's films are mostly in 8mm or Super 8mm and borrow from the vocabulary of the 'home movie' in that they deal largely with the objects and events in the artist's every-day life. As with his drawing, there is an intent to record and reveal from this context of the everyday with the draughtsman's eye for gesture, contrast and composition. Through a play with rhythm, repetition and highlighting, aspects of that reality are intensified.
THREE POEMS (1972, B & W, Silent, 16mm, 15
AMARYLLIS (1973, Colour, Silent, Super 8 blow-up
from Regular 8, 2 1/2 minutes)
BIG WAVE (1973, B & W, Silent, 16mm, 6 1/2
NINE BIRTHDAYS (1974-83, Colour, Sound on cassette,
Regular 8, 40+ minutes)
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Available with artist present only. Two cakes are prepared and placed on either side of the screen on tall stands. Halfway through the film the filmmaker lights the candles and then blows them out. This same image is repeated within the film itself. If the cakes are real it is distributed to the audience when the film is finished.
KINGSTON BY BUS (1975, Colour, Silent, Super 8
blow up from regular 8, 6 1/2 minutes)
TIM HORTON DOUGHNUTS
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Parts of the sound-track recorded at slow speed, do not adjust projector speed.
WASHAGO (1976, B & W, Silent, 16mm, 10 minutes)
"He took his bolex on one of the trips and decided to make a pan every 10 minutes—no matter where he was. The film starts with left to right pans (as were all but one) of a completely wooded area and gradually becomes more and more citified as the rides are getting him closer and closer to Toronto ... The rhythm and structure are very distinct, yet Washago has a loose and easy mood to it." Cinema Canada
EAT (1977, Colour, Silent, Super 8, 9 minutes)
MR. SIGNMAN, MAKE ME A SIGN (1977-78, Colour,
Silent, Super 8, 22 minutes)
"Mr. Signman, Make Me A Sign gets its title from a sign painted on a building. Images from advertising, particularly billboards abound. But there are other images—construction on a street, a man lounging in a lawn chair, a boy and girl kissing on the sidewalk—and we realize that these are signs as well. Each carries a certain amount of weight as a sign for some activity in our culture but what prevents the film from slipping into being merely a catalogue of cultural cliches is a feeling that grows steadily that there is a point of view here." Anna Gronau, Funnel Newsletter Vol. 1, No. 2 (March 1980)
BI-RITE (1978, Colour, Silent, Super 8, 11 minutes)
Jim Anderson, a long-time active member of the Funnel, began making films while still a high-school student. Some of his earliest films were painted-on-film animations. Anderson's collaborator at that time was Keith Lock, and while each continued to work independently, their working partnership continued for several years as they attended York University's Film Program and later became involved with the Toronto Filmmakers' Co-op. Anderson and Lock's best-known collaborative efforts are Arnold (1970) and its sequel Work, Bike and Eat (1972), a pair of black and white narratives. (See: Films by Jim Anderson and Keith Lock).
Anderson has also worked on other projects—with theatre director Paul Thompson and Louis Del Grande creating sets and films for theatrical productions; as one of the camera operators for Michael Snow during the making of his film Rameau's Nephew… (1974) and later on Snow's film installation Two Sides to Every Story; and with Peter Dudar and Lily Eng of Missing Associates in the production of several dance/film works.
Anderson's work in paintings and constructs has been as important as his filmmaking. It is worth noting that the artist's figurative, expressionistic painting style is now considered to include him as among the 'New Image' school of painters in Toronto, although it has been characteristic of his approach for over a decade. Anderson's films, paintings and constructs reveal an interest with the inexplicable fears and visions of the individual in the midst of a complex and ambiguous world. He is interested in the occurrence of knowledge through paradox, contradiction and defeat.
SCREAM OF A BUTTERFLY (1969, Colour, Silent, 16mm,
Winner of Grand Prix, Tenth Muse International Student Film Festival, Amsterdam 1969
YONGE STREET (1972, Black and White, Sound, 16mm,
Included in the National Gallery of Canada's `Filmmaker Series 1974'.
R. O. M. (ROYAL ONTARIO MUSEUM)
Included in National Gallery's 'Filmmaker Series 1974'
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Please note that this is to be played at silent speed with the sound on. If the projector sound does not function at silent speed then it may be shown at sound speed.
S-MO (1973, Colour, Sound, 16mm. 7 minutes)
GRAVITY IS NOT SAD BUT GLAD (1975, Colour, Sound,
16mm, 94 minutes)
CANADA MINI-NOTES (1975, Colour, Sound, 16mm,
Award winner at the Ann Arbor 16mm Film Festival 1978
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Sound is first heard part way through the film, but sound should be turned on from the beginning of the film.
MOVING BICYCLE PICTURE (1972-75, Colour, Silent,
16mm, 12 minutes)
LE BOIS DE BALZAC / THE WOODS OF BALZAC
YELLOW WOMAN MEETS THE X WOMAN (1981, Colour,
Sound, Super 8, 6 minutes)
Sound by The Elementals.
NOTE: Sound cuts in and out abruptly, this is intentional.
AUDREY: WAY UP NORTH (1982, Colour, Sound, Super
8, 10 minutes)
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Sound will seem slow—this is intentional.
FILMS BY JIM ANDERSON and KEITH LOCK
BASE TRANQUILITY (1970, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 6
Winner of the Best Animation Prize at the International Amateur Film Festival, Toronto 1970
WORK, BIKE, AND EAT (1972, Black and White, Sound,
16mm, 40 minutes)
Starring John Turnbull.
Broadcast on PBS Buffalo 'The Frontier' series 1979.
Rebecca Baird's films represent part of an oeuvre that includes painting and environmental installations. Baird's focus is on post-modern utilization of interior space. Her work is quirky and humourous—for instance, she built a 9 foot cactus out of Rice Crispies for a Desert Environment. She makes us reconsider the meanings of common materials by relocating them in oddly informed spaces. Some of her painted backdrops are on permanent display in Toronto at the Rivoli and Queen Mother restaurants. Other, temporary exhibits at the Funnel Gallery and the ChromaLiving Show have been favorably reviewed by the Toronto Globe & Mail and by Vanguard magazine.
In her films, Ms. Baird uses painted, coloured backdrops, fast editing, and hand-held camera work in a manner which evokes the immediacy and high energy of her environmental constructions. Travel and romance are key themes in Baird's work. Her visual imagination seems particularly attuned to the topography of the American South-West. As Baird is part native North American in ancestry, this iconographical concern is not only visually, but also personally, intrinsic to her work. Baird's films tend to be autobiographical, but it is personal history as transmuted by an artist. The films, though intense, have a dream-like quality to them that reflects Baird's desires to transform private concerns into a more generalized public display.
YEA YEA (1981, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 13 minutes)
STAND BY YOUR PLANT
A demented Japanese tea party infuses the narrative with an absurd element: Perrier water is drunk instead of tea or sake.
Lynda and George are stuck on their musical archetypes. George wants to be James Brown, the Godfather of Soul. Lynda imagines herself to be Tammy Wynette, the Country Dream Queen. There is no common ground for the two. They must stand by their own fantastical plants.
WHITE-OUT (1981, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 3 minutes)
Although best known as an experimental filmmaker, Raphael Bendahan is also a photographer, choreographer, art administrator, writer and teacher of film production at Concordia University in Montreal, where in 1980 he received his MFA in photography. Bendahan immigrated to Canada from Casablanca at age 7. He has produced 9 films, and co-founded and co-edited Impressions, a Toronto photomagazine.
On his work, he has said "The photographs and films I've done have dealt with the marginal person or point of view. Le Jardin, for example, uses an immigrant's story as the voice-over narrative and images of insular immigrant views of life - their gardens and their views. At the same time, it is my story too."
In 1974, Bendahan's film L'Ennui was chosen as one of the two Canadian entries for the 5th International Experimental Film Festival in Knokke Heist, Belgium. Le Jardin (du Paradis) the Garden was awarded the 2nd prize in the International Competition of the 4th International Super 8 Film Festival of Quebec, special Mention in National Competition in 1983, and Best Experimental Film Award at the Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto, Summer 1983.
LE JARDIN (DU PARADIS) THE GARDEN
Although Le Jardin was originally shot in Super 8, Bendahan completed the film in 16mm, colour. "I chose to work in Super 8 for a number of reasons related to the idea I wanted to express ... the intimacy of subject, the play on memory suggested by the often grainy, fuzzy-bright colour Super 8 could provide, especially in terms of the subject and typical 'home movies'."
"Le Jardin (du Paradis) The Garden is a narrative of displacement between cultures, between cities, between times. The narrative folds back on and exposes itself as the narrator alternates between languages (French and English) and cities (Montreal and Toronto). A sense of cathartic inquiry is underlined by the slow weaving movements of the camera as it explores the confines of a walled garden / jardin." Michaelle McLean / Canadian Images Festival 1983
David Bennell moved to Canada in 1968. While studying physics at the University of Toronto he became interested in making films. He is a self taught filmmaker and considers the personal control of the various processes in filmmaking as an important element in his work. This attitude extends into every aspect of film and even into questioning the 'industry standards': that quasi scientific assemblage of data which dictates what is acceptable in terms of image quality. This has led recently into an examination of the uses of colour using dye toning systems and chromogenic development in order to find his own personal colour standards.
David Bennell is currently The Funnel darkroom coordinator and has taught filmmaking and processing workshops at The Funnel, the University of Toronto and the Ontario College of Art.
BROOKLYN BRIDGE (1979, B& W, Sound, 16mm,
METAMORPHOSE (1981, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 12
Soundtrack: Original score by Bill Grove, saxophone
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Double projection version of this film available with filmmaker present.
HADRIAN'S VILLA (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8,
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Sound on cassette
CIRCLE LINE (1983, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 20
BERQUIST / SUJIR
Douglas Berquist studied film at York University and Sheridan College in the Toronto area and now lives and works in Calgary. He is an active member of the Calgary Society of Independent Filmmakers and has designed and taught filmmaking workshops there for a number of years. He has acted as technical director for a number of performance works including some with Marcella Bien-venue, as well as being involved with his own filmmaking.
Berquist brings to his films a technical polish and visual sophistication. His experiences as president of his own film and music production company have no doubt been invaluable in providing a facility with and understanding of the conventions of the cinematic image.
Leila Sujir's work as a writer, critic, filmmaker and organizer has been of central importance to the development of an alternative film culture in Calgary Alberta. Sujir was a founding member of the Calgary Society of Independent Filmmakers and was instrumental in shaping the organization's mandate.
She received a degree in English Literature from the University of Alberta and has continued her studies in film and art history, creative writing and criticism. Her writing and filmmaking are concerned with the processes and structures of language—as a force that the user both controls and is controlled by.
TECHNOLOGICALLY NATIVE (1983, Colour, Sound, 16mm,
The film uses a number of forms of narrative to tell the story and to document narrative. At times, the narrative turns in on itself, convoluting the viewer's perception of the film, as well as Pol's and Marie's perceptions of the story they move through. In many places the figures in the film become tangled in language and attempt to discover how they and we structure our world. Technologically Native is a CSIF Workshop Production. Marcella Bienvenue and Murdoch Burnett play the two principal roles.
Deborah Clarkin studied drawing, printmaking and film at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto. In her final year of studies she attended the school's New York City campus and has since continued to live and work in New York. Her work to date is produced in Super 8, employing techniques such as superimposed titles of re-photographed imagery to take the medium far beyond its customary "home movie" gauge.
Clarkin's films frequently tackle their subjects in a manner appropriate to a feminist reading. Housework, sexual interaction, and family relations are taken apart, reassembled, revealed and exposed, frequently with a twist of ironic humour.
WALKING ITALIANS (1980, Colour, Silent, Super
8, 4 minutes)
SIDES (1980, Colour, Silent; Super 8, 5 minutes)
DISCO PORNO (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 10
MONSTER (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 15 minutes)
Ian Cochrane was educated at the University of Toronto, Art's Sake, and the Ontario College of Art where he completed his studies in 1982. Through his course of studies to the present, he has worked in various media, including film, video, performance, painting and xerography. Ian's work often involves the manipulation, collage and editing of found footage and imagery. He has exhibited performance, music and video works in Montreal and London, England, and is currently reworking found footage to a slide show format.
AGE OLD AND INSTANTANEOUS HOURS (1982, Colour,
Silent, Super 8, 6 minutes)
"I started out as a still photographer, and my biggest photographic project, Scarecrow, involved 22 people dressing up in the same clothes, one item at a time: pants, jacket, gloves, scarf and hat. I photographed each person in his or her own home at each stage of the process of becoming clothed. Among other things, Scarecrow was about gesture in costume, and the photographs in each person's sequence bore a resemblance to the still frames of a film.
Springing from my work in still photography, all my films have combined the strong still image with the choreography of everyday movement and gesture. People on the street are my most frequent subjects and I have always found their chance activity fascinating. I am also very interested in the juxtaposition of personal and public space, as my first feature-length film, In the Alcove, At the Place demonstrates. I am currently working on Path, also to be a feature-length, which is a much looser, more exploratory film than the earlier one. Path is comprised of three steps in a process repeated over and over: I am filmed connecting two dots on a street map of Toronto; next I go out and walk the distance between the two dots, filming as I go (architecture I like, details I pick up, people I meet); then I am filmed making drawings and models of where I've been and what I've seen. So essentially the film is about experience and the analysis of experience. It's a cross-town trip leaving from my house in the west end and finishing at The Funnel in the east end, and it's been shot over a year's time." Martha Davis, August 1983
SUBWAY (1979, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 20 minutes)
INTRODUCING ELWY (1979, Colour, Silent, Super
8, 5 minutes)
APPLYING AND REMOVING (1979, Colour, Silent, Super
8, 20 minutes)
A BALL IN CALIFORNIA (1980, Colour, Sound, Super
8, 17 minutes)
IN THE ALCOVE, AT THE PLACE (1980-81, Colour,
Sound, Super 8, 94 minutes)
Second Prize Art/Experimental Category, Toronto International Super 8 Festival 1982.
Judith Doyle studied both writing and visual arts at York University in Toronto. Since that time, as well as producing her own art, she has been active in Toronto's artist-operated centres and in publication. Along with Fred Gaysek, she founded Rumour Publications, producing books by artists, poetry and fiction. Presently, she is a co-editor of Impulse, an art and culture magazine published in Toronto, and is a member of The Funnel.
Doyle's work includes performance, filmmaking and writing. Often her projects appear in discrete, but complimentary forms - for example, Rate of Descent was presented as a performance, then re-worked for publication as a text. Her origins as a writer are apparent in much of her work. Often, she records and transcribes conversations with ordinary people - an artist who broke his back, a rural woman photographer, shipbuilders, a Maryknoll monk practising "theology of liberation" in Guatemala. The transcripts form the basis for a script or text. The relation between what is called "fiction" or "history", and the struggle, through language and recording technology to match inward experience with external equivalents, are her broader themes at this time. Currently, Doyle is working on a film based on her experiences in Nicaragua, which examines the role of culture in the revolutionary process of rewriting history.
LAUNCH (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 19 minutes)
PRIVATE PROPERTY / PUBLIC HISTORY
RATE OF DESCENT
SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Equipment required: three Carousel slide projectors, one reel-to-reel tape recorder, two remote control slide changer extension cords.
Costs of presenting the performance will vary based on equipment available, travel costs, and so on.
Bruce Elder's undergraduate and graduate studies were done in science and philosophy. He also attended a Canadian technical university for film training. Mr. Elder operates an optical and audio studio/laboratory where he engages in production and research in colour printing and microcomputer applications in audio synthesis. He has written many articles on Canadian film and Canadian art, and on electronic music theory. His films have received showings in England, France, United States, Canada and Australia, including a one-man show in 1981 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He has received a number of grants and awards, including a Canadian Film Award in 1976 for Barbara is A Vision of Loveliness, and a special Los Angeles Film Critics award in 1981. He has been an executive member of several Canadian film organizations, including The Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre, a distribution agency for independent film, including experimental films. His current project is a feature-length film autobiography. He has curated programmes for OKanada, Canadian Images and the Bourges experimental music and film festival. Mr. Elder recently completed a three-hour-long film on history, entitled Illuminated Texts and is presently working on a new feature-length film. He is presently employed by Ryerson Polytechnical Institute where he teaches film aesthetics and photographing the nude. B. E.
SHE IS AWAY (1975, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 13.5 minutes)
PERMUTATIONS AND COMBINATIONS (1976, Colour, Sound,
16mm, 8 minutes)
`Fast Wurms' is the corporate name used by collaborators Kim Kozzi, Napo B. and Dai Skuse. These artists have worked together since 1972 in a variety of media which can be roughly categorized as painting, sculpture, installation, performance and film. There are constant overlaps, however, and films produced by this duo are usually the outgrowth or a part of installations, paintings or performances. Instead of making 'ready-mades' (the transformation of a common object to art by movement to the gallery), the Wurms 'remake' - friends, food and commodities by painting, lighting, editing and up-ending them from their standard place in the world. Fast Wurms productions tend to be loosely-cut Super 8 extravaganzas that turn consumer culture into art, and art into consumer culture. They are anarchic and irreverent and owe a certain amount of their aesthetic to a kind of post-punk fetishism about mass-production. A degree of nihilism is balanced by a developed satirical wit. Although Kim Kozzi and Napo B. worked together on the films listed, authorship is assigned on the basis of the majority of creative control in each piece.
ZIGZAG (1980, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 7 minutes)
TRIGGERS AND SCANNERS (1981, Colour, Sound, Super
8, 17 minutes)
UNIVERSAL COLOUR SYSTEMS (1980, Colour, Sound,
Super 8, 18 minutes)
SUICIDE RE-ENTRY (1980, Colour, Sound, Super 8,
GONE FISHING and BRIOCHE DU CAREME (1980, Colour,
Sound, Super 8, 10 minutes)
Mickey's involvement with The Funnel began with photography but recently she has been making films, parodies of various movie "genres" - The Monster Movie and The Western. Currently, however, she is working on a night movie: an evocation of the elusive character of Chinatown. In 1978 she co-produced a videotape of part of Roger Zelazny's book Courts of Chaos. Painted constructions were animated and then manipulated by the Paik-Abe colour video synthesizer to enhance the magical tone of the narrative. Work in other media has included a great deal of children's art and similar fantastical paper sculpture environments which will eventually be incorporated in future animated film.
GODZILLA VERSUS THE C. N. TOWER (1981, Colour,
Sound, Super 8, 9 minutes)
MY OWN WESTERN (1983, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 9 minutes)
Eldon Garnet is known in Toronto as something of a Renaissance man. He was writing and publishing poetry in the late 1960s and has gone from there to performance, photography, and publishing. He is best known as the 8-year publisher of Impulse Magazine, a glossy international magazine of art and culture. Garnet has produced a number of films and videotapes, most of which are fairly witty and reflect his association with a variety of disciplines, either in the fact that they 'star' members of the art community, or that they were made in collaboration with various other artists (Duncan Johnson in Einstein's Joke, and Ross McLaren in Winning).
Recently, Garnet has used the structure of fables or parables to illustrate contemporary psychological conflicts and dilemmas. He has produced a series of photographs with text derived from performance tableau on this theme. He is currently working on a film to be entitled The Political Error that uses a baseball game as a metaphor for life.
EINSTEIN'S JOKE (1978, Colour, Sound, Super 8,
With Duncan Johnson
PORTRAITS (1977-1983, Colour, Sound, Super 8,
Rick Greenwald has been making films since the early 1970s. For several years he has produced very short films—from thirty seconds to four minutes in length. Frequently working with an optical printer, Greenwald favoured fairly simple procedures such as the repetition or slowing down of an image, to make each work an unambiguous, specific visual statement. He has said of his films, "No metaphors are needed. I want my films to be direct experience." His most recent work Tabula Rasa departs from earlier films in that it is much longer, yet it too has an elegant simplicity.
In addition to producing his own films, Rick Greenwald has been on staff at Millennium Film Workshop in New York City and at the State University of New York in Binghampton, contributing much to the experimental film community in New York State in recent years. At Rick Greenwald's request the following statement is included: "Every March, Mr. Greenwald predicts the Tigers will win the pennant."
LAND (1976-79, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 10 minutes)
WORLD WAR TWO - I WASN'T THERE (1980, B/W, Sound,
16mm, 1 minute)
TABULA RASA (1980, Colour, Silent, 16mm, 28 minutes)
Vincent Grenier's films have been called minimalist, materialist, and reductionist. But generally reviewers have hastened to add that these films have a beauty that makes them quite unique. Jim Hoberman, for instance, writing in the Village Voice, says "The work of Vincent Grenier ... is extraordinarily subtle and elusive; even in the context of other reductionist filmmakers."
Grenier's films focus on perceptions which hover between recognition and non-recognition. The viewer attempts to consolidate visual cues into a larger 'picture' of what is really being represented, but is consistently confounded. The sheer visual materiality of the projected light reclaims precedence. In the films, delicate forms and movements are juxtaposed in a magical, almost humourous way.
Grenier was born in Quebec but in recent years has been living and working in the United States, initially in San Francisco where he was programmer of Canyon Cinematheque for a time, and now in New York City where he is an active member of the Collective for Living Cinema.
CLOSER OUTSIDE / PLUS PROCHE DEHORS (1979, Colour,
Silent, 16mm, 10 minutes)
Anna Gronau's films are inquiries into the nature of film and perception. Yet her method of selecting and manipulating film images is highly intuitive and subjective: magic, witchcraft and dream structures are references. While feminine and feminist concerns pervade much of the work, they are never presented didactically or distinct from the formal investigation at hand. Through optical printing, sound re-recording and personal, condensed imagery, she asks the question "What is it?" regarding the film experience and suggests some unique and uniquely feminine replies.
Between 1980 and 1982, Gronau was Director/Programmer of The Funnel, piloting the organization through crucial years, including extensive renovations, conflicts with the film censors and the expansion of activities into educational areas and film distribution. She has written and lectured on experimental film and engaged in related political and organizational actions. As a founding member of the Film and Video Against Censorship group, she has been a powerful adversary to the Ontario Censor Board in its bid to cut and ban films by artists.
MAPLE LEAF UNDERSTORY (1978, Colour, Silent, 16mm,
IN-CAMERA SESSIONS (1979, Colour, Sound, Super
8, 5 minutes)
WOUND CLOSE (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 8 minutes)
With Eleanor Cruise
ARADIA (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8, 2 1/2 minutes)
With Amber Bush, Jeanne Minhinnick. Sound and technical advice: Ross McLaren. Music: Ross McLaren.
Robert Gutteridge is a teacher with a passion for cinematography. A degree in Visual Arts and Film from the University of Western Ontario provided formal education but it was through his informal education - travel and educational films and screenwriting attempts - that ultimately led him to experimental filmmaking by 1976. His early studies, Presto, Ambience, Cassation and Ephemeral Perpetuity, extended his brush to the camera in order to understand the techniques of the film medium. "It was the elements of Time and Space that frustrated me in my painting and film gave me the vehicle I was seeking", says Gutteridge. His film By-pass, screened at the 1980 Ann Arbor Film Festival, broke new ground, for it concerns "meaning" on various levels. This was immediately followed by Salzburg Sketches, a personal delving into time.
While teaching in Switzerland in 1981, Robert Gutteridge began work on three 16mm films: Album, a time film; Inferno, poetry and film and Passing Over, a multi-projection film postulating that film is only of the present. Two Super 8 films were prepared, one completed, the other yet to be eidted. He is now exploring narrative structure in a production titled Esse Est Percipi (To Be Is To Be Perceived) which, for the first time, employs an actor.
Having become aware of the marvelous machines that permit film art to exist, Gutteridge began collecting cine artifacts, many of which he has presented in lectures at both The Funnel and Hart House, University of Toronto. "I find these as experimental as the films we artists produce." Some day he plans to house his collection in a museum of cinematography.
EPHEMERAL PERPETUITY (1979, Colour, Sound, 16mm,
9 1/2 minutes)
BY-PASS (1979-80, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 11 1/2
Barbara Hammer's films are a unique combination of feminist consciousness, lesbian and feminine imagery and visual experimentation. Her work has been compared with that of Maya Deren —"the creation of a vivid picture language: complicated cinematic metaphors that have the vertical dimensions of dreams rather than a linear, horizontal structure." (Woman's Media Festival)
Hammer has written "I continue to feel, believe and think that women have a unique source of form and content that relates from biology and social structure and that has just begun to emerge in the last ten years in our work. Art, the expression of the new, is to me the most innovative manner of changing politics. Without an audience that can see in the new way the art provokes, how can we change a politic?"
She sees the six films represented here as early work stemming from a time when feminism was budding and hopes and idealism were rampant. They were made with a youthful energy and spirit and belief in female power denied by the patriarchy. They still represent this belief which Barbara Hammer shares with female and male feminists all over the world. More recent films focus on abstract imagery still there is a consistent and conscious return to the female body and imagery that continues to pervade her work.
"X" (1974, 16mm, Colour, Sound, 8 minutes)
PSYCHOSYNTHESIS (1975, 16mm, Colour, Sound, 8
MENSES (1974, 16mm, Colour, Sound, 4 minutes)
OUR TRIP (1980, 16mm, Colour, Sound, 4 minutes)
SAPPHO (1979, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 7 minutes)
DYKETACTICS (1974, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 4 minutes)
NOTE: There is a reduced rental rate when all six films are rented as a package.
Freider Hoccheim's films begin with a familiar cinematic image; characters face the camera and read statements. But neither plot nor character develop and the films collapse into absurdity. Hoccheim cites the influence of Dada on his work and points out that the films ask not "What will be the outcome of this situation?", rather, "What in fact is the situation?".
Hoccheim graduated from Ryerson Polytechnical Institute in 1977 and currently works in the film industry in California.
PLURALITY OF VIBRATORY CIRCUMSTANCES
ACCUMULATIVE DISTINCTIONS EXTENDING A FALSE UTILITY
Born in Lima, Peru, the son of a writer and diplomat, Jenkins travelled extensively and lived in Italy, Pakistan, Nigeria and India before coming to Canada.
He studied film for two years at Toronto's York University and has recently graduated from the Ontario College of Art where he worked mainly in Super 8 film but also did some video and installations.
Jenkin's work as an artist is shaped by his interest in sexual politics. He has acted as curator and organizer of several lesbian and gay film and video events in Toronto, including "Doing It" and "invert Exposure" during the summer of 1982.
POMEGRANATE CHIC (1982, Colour, Sound, Super 8,
"My intentions were ... to show people a collage of imagery centred around issues that concern me. These issues being facism, feminism, apathy, homosexuality, masculinity, the mass media, art and entertainment." N. J.
Patrick Jenkins is a visual artist who makes drawings, sculpture and films. He has written, "I've always found films to be most exciting when they transcend their 'documenting' or recording role. That is I find films to be most exciting when the film is a vehicle that leads me on through experiences that I couldn't normally have." As a result his films play with the illusionistic aspects of film. Jenkins sees his films as akin in spirit to the early pioneers of the silent cinema rather than the recent developments of structuralist and new narrative cinema.
As a result he is interested in a human, populist cinema that is quite different from the rigorous aesthetics of most experimental film. His most successful films Wedding Before Me, Shadowplay, and Sign Language are as much about the rituals of everyday life and human interaction as they are about the nature of the film medium.
"To sum up I would say that I am interested in a cinema of humour and people. As much as I respect the rigor of most structuralist work I see no reason to adhere to such stringent guidelines in my own work. On the other hand my work is not narrative in the accepted sense. I am interested in a playful interaction of manipulated images and sketchy story lines to create a delightful cinema."
He has shown his films in art centres and theatres in Canada, U.S.A. and Europe and has received numerous awards and grants for his work including two Ontario Arts Council Film Grants and a Canada Council "B" Grant for Drawing. At present he is an Assistant Professor of Film at York University.
WEDDING BEFORE ME (1976, Colour, Sound, 16mm,
RUSE (1980, Colour, Sound, 16mm, 7 minutes)
SHADOWPLAY (1981, Black and White, Sound, 16mm,
The film is constructed in a playful manner with an actor manipulating various shadow images behind a screen. One shadow image is, in fact, a life-size silhouette of himself that he encounters. Throughout Shadowplay the action borders on becoming a narrative but never totally succeeds in becoming one." P. J.
Awards: Director's Chair Award, 1982 Toronto S-8 Film Festival.
SIGN LANGUAGE (1982, B W, Sound, 16mm, 10 minutes)
Using this basic imagery I constructed Sign Language to be both a funny and horrifying film. The film runs rampant through a world of sinister sign symbols (bombs, ski masks, faceless stick figures). These symbols are combined with actors performing highly stylized activities (rioting, making phone calls, arguing and eating). Nothing in the film is realistic. Everything in the film has a feeling of being contrived and set up. Even the actors appear behind a translucent screen as flat shadowy cameos. The sense of story is totally contrived by a juxtaposition of sound effects, actors and symbol signs.
Sign Language is designed as a visceral response to symbol signs rather than an analysis of symbol signs. It takes the idea of portraying life as a series of symbols to the extreme; to a world where everything exists only as a sign or representation." P. J.
Actors include Bettie Liota, Karen Kazmer and others.