Martha Davis was born in London, Ontario in 1959. She recieved her Honours B.A. in Film and Drama from the University of Toronto and began her career as a still photographer. She has made over twelve films and served on the boards of Directors of the Canadian Filmmakers’ Distribution Centre and The Funnel.
- Path (1987, Super 8, sound, colour, 104min)
Employing a simple three-part structure, “PATH” is about personal experience and the interpretation of that experience. Both humorous and serious, the film is a cross-Toronto exploration, expansively taking in a wide variety of people, events and situations. In creating a dynamic web of associations, “PATH” invites participation in the act of perception.
The film’s structure works like this: Davis is filmed connecting dots on a street map; next she walks that distance on the street, filming as she goes; then she recalls and interprets what she has seen in memory sequences. The street sequences have a variety of different rhythms and are filled with surprises. She films a marathon race and a disarmament rally, walks along the route of the Santa Claus parade, witnesses a skirmish in which the police intervene, chases a little girl through a greenhouse, attends a scarecrow festival and runs through a cemetery, to mention but a few.
The memory sequences in “PATH” starts out being rather representational, but as the film unfolds become looser and more abstract: crude miniature drawings with magic marker give way to Davis’ performance of gestures later on. “PATH” makes itself up as it goes along, so is very much about the process of making art. “PATH” is diaristic in nature, shot chronologically over a two-year period through the changing seasons, and deals with personal history and experience through memory and association. Sound by Bill Grovel.
Screening format: New 2K digital tranfer under the supervision of the filmmaker.
Thanks to Martha Davis for her collaboration.