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Media Contact: Karen Larsen, pcavagnaro@berkeley.edu, (415) 957-1205

Alternative Visions (September 4—November 20, 2013)

Rehearsals for Retirement, Image Alchemy: The Films of Phil Solomon, October 16.


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Berkeley, CA, August 26, 2013 — The University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive’s (BAM/PFA) presents Alternative Visions. Our annual film series highlighting experimental cinema begins with an exciting array of recent animation, with many artists in person, including the multitalented Nancy Andrews. Her animations vary from the handmade—collaging cutout images and everyday objects, or using puppets and felt-tip sketches—to the digital. Filmmaking alchemists Phil Solomon and Abigail Child travel to the Bay Area to present works from their long careers. Each deconstructs narrative and history in surprising, innovative ways. Solomon’s rhapsodic, dreamlike films radically extend the possibilities of imagemaking. Abigail Child’s exhilarating examinations of gesture, gender, and desire dovetail with a recent documentary on the visionary New York artist Carolee Schneemann. We also present new videos from emerging Bay Area filmmakers. Each program is introduced by an artist, critic, or curator from the community.

Alternative Visions continues into November with visits by the Portuguese filmmaker Susana de Sousa Dias and Lynne Sachs from New York. John Gianvito and Paul Chan present works in our new series Committed Cinema that intersect with the explorations of Alternative Visions. We are pleased to announce that this year’s Alternative Visions series is made possible by the support of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

The program notes for the screenings follow; for more information on these programs or about ticket purchase, please phone BAM/PFA at (510) 642-1412.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Phantom Limbs and Mad Scientists: The Films of Nancy Andrews
Nancy Andrews (U.S., 2009–10). Nancy Andrews in person. Two comedic horror musical documentary animations comprising drawn imagery, puppets, live action, archival footage, and songs written and performed by Andrews. (60 mins)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Lost and Found: Recent Experimental Animation
Lawrence Jordan, Kerry Laitala, James Sansing, Stacey Steers in person. Whether dreamscapes or videoscapes, hand-painted films or videos painted with computer pixels, the works in this program suggest the diversity evident in recent experimental animation. Also includes work by T. Marie, Jodie Mack, and Evan Meaney. (54 mins)

Wednesday, September 18, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Holy Motors
Leos Carax (France, 2012). Introduced by Jeffrey Skoller. An audacious, surreal film that shifts from the everyday to the realm of science fiction, via the extraordinary roleplaying of Denis Lavant. Indiewire Critics Poll Best Film of 2012. (115 mins)

Wednesday, September 25, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Profit motive and the whispering wind
John Gianvito (U.S., 2007). John Gianvito in person. A minimalist memorial to America's radicals and freethinkers, inspired by Howard Zinn. Screening as part of our Committed Cinema series. (58 mins)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Belonging: Bay Area Student Film Festival 2013
Student filmmakers in person. Student curators in person. The films in this year’s festival reveal the myriad themes that preoccupy the minds of young filmmakers across the Bay Area. (94 mins)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Breaking the Frame
Marielle Nitoslawska (Canada, 2012). Introduction by Anne Walsh. A sensual, highly textured meditation on the creative process of artist Carolee Schneemann, intermixing the artist's personal reflections with documentation of her art. (100 mins)

Wednesday, October 16, 2013; 7 p.m. 
Image Alchemy: The Films of Phil Solomon
Phil Solomon (U.S., 1983–2013). Phil Solomon in person. New Restorations! “Over a three-decade career, filmmaker Phil Solomon has established himself as one of the great visionary artists of American experimental cinema” (National Gallery of Art). (69 mins)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013; 7 p.m. 
From Baghdad to Badlands
Paul Chan (U.S., 2010–13). Paul Chan in person. Introduced by Apsara DiQuinzio. Chan's video essay on Iraq just prior to the American invasion, plus other projects by the artist/activist. (90 mins)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013; 7 p.m. 
The Films of Abigail Child
Abigail Child (U.S., 1983–2013). Abigail Child in person. Works spanning thirty years of the filmmaker's career, from 16mm to digital, that reveal Child's roots in language poetry. (73 mins)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013; 7 p.m.
The Films of Peter Hutton: Sense of Place
Hutton’s meditative, silent portraits of place—from the Hudson River and New York City to Lodz—“offer lessons in the art of seeing.” (Tom Gunning)

Wednesday, November 13, 2013; 7 p.m.
Susana de Sousa Dias (Portugal, 2009). Susana de Sousa Dias in person. De Sousa Dias’s remarkable, hypnotic film is composed of photographs taken upon the arrest of political prisoners during the forty-eight years of the Portuguese dictatorial regime.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013; 7 p.m.
Your Day is My Night
Lynne Sachs (U.S., 2013). Lynne Sachs in person. Sachs presents her most recent experimental documentary, set in the heart of New York City’s Chinatown.

Founded in 1963, the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) is UC Berkeley’s primary visual arts venue and among the largest university art museums in terms of size and audience in the United States. Internationally recognized for its art and film programming, BAM/PFA is a platform for cultural experiences that transform individuals, engage communities, and advance the local, national and global discourse on art and ideas. BAM/PFA’s mission is “to inspire the imagination and ignite critical dialogue through art and film.”

BAM/PFA presents approximately fifteen art exhibitions and 380 film programs each year. The museum’s collection of over 16,000 works of art includes important holdings of Neolithic Chinese ceramics, Ming and Qing Dynasty Chinese painting, Old Master works on paper, Italian Baroque painting, early American painting, Abstract Expressionist painting, contemporary photography, and video art. Its film archive of over 14,000 films and videos includes the largest collection of Japanese cinema outside of Japan, Hollywood classics, and silent film, as well hundreds of thousands of articles, reviews, posters, and other ephemera related to the history of film, many of which are digitally scanned and accessible online.

Theater Information
PFA Theater: 2575 Bancroft Way, just below Bowditch Street on the Berkeley campus.

PFA Theater Admission:
General admission is $9.50; admission for UC Berkeley faculty/staff, non-UC Berkeley students, seniors (65+), disabled persons, 17 & under; admission is $5.50 for BAM/PFA members and UC Berkeley students. Additional same-day features are $4.00 unless otherwise noted.

Information: 24-hour recorded message (510) 642-0808; fax (510) 642-4889; TDD (510) 642-8734.

Website: bampfa.berkeley.edu

For more information about the film series please contact Karen Larsen at (415) 957-1205 or larsenassc@aol.com.