04: Laida Lertxundi, Stephanie Beroes, Deborah Stratman, Beatrice Gibson

4 April, 2019 - 22:30
SPHINX CINEMA

 

Four films by four female filmmakers that foreground collaboration and citation as feminist strategies.

 

In the presence of Beatrice Gibson

Words, Planets

Laida Lertxundi
,
US, ES
,
2018
,
16mm
,
colour
,
11'

Composed of scenes with non-actors and words borrowed from R.D Laing and Lucy Lippard (via a Spanish translation), Words, Planets applies the six principles for composition delineated in Reflections on Painting by the Monk Bitter Pumpkin, written by the eighteenth-century Chinese painter Shih-T’ao — as referenced in Raúl Ruiz’s essay For a Shamanic Cinema (for example, “draw attention to a scene emerging from a static background” or “add scattered dynamism to immobility”). In the course of making Words, Planets, Lertxundi became pregnant and gave birth. This transformation of her life and her body deeply affected the filmmaking process of a film that concludes with the statement: “and my life from now on is two lives.” A film that reads as a poem.

Recital

Stephanie Beroes
,
US
,
1978
,
16mm
,
colour
,
20'

Inspired by Simone De Beauvoir’s writings, Stephanie Beroes’s film Recital addresses the state of ‘women in love’, a situation fraught less with ecstasy than with risk and pain. Each section involves a woman, situated in some external location, reading a letter or other text. The soundtrack is composed entirely of women’s words — her own as well as those of Carolee Schneemann, Casey Miller and Kathleen Frazier. Through the distanced juxtaposition of words and image, and the progression of ideas within the texts themselves, Beroes accomplishes a true recital, that is, a re-reading of past experiences given shape over time.

Vever (for Barbara)

Deborah Stratman
,
US
,
2019
,
HD
,
colour
,
12'

A cross-generational binding of three filmmakers — Deborah Stratman, Barbara Hammer and Maya Deren — seeking alternative possibilities to the power structures they are inherently part of. Each woman extends her gaze like an offered hand to a subject she is outside of. Vever (for Barbara) grew out of the abandoned film projects of Maya Deren and Barbara Hammer. Shot at the furthest point of a motorcycle trip Hammer took to Guatemala in 1975, and laced through with Deren’s reflections on failure, encounter, and initiation in 1950s Haiti. A ‘vever’ is a symbolic drawing used in Haitian Voodoo to invoke a Loa, or god.

I Hope I’m Loud When I’m Dead

Beatrice Gibson
,
UK
,
2018
,
HD
,
colour
,
20'

I Hope I’m Loud When I’m Dead was filmed in part with CAConrad and Eileen Myles, two of the USA’s most significant living poets, on the eve of the 45th presidential inauguration in January 2017. Weaving together CAConrad and Myles’ words with those of other poets, footage shot through the following year in America and Europe, and intimate moments with her family, the film is a deeply personal work in which Gibson seeks out the power of ritual, casting the poet as a prophet navigating an alternative path in times of perilous authority.