After shows in Los Angeles (Echo Park), Winnipeg (WNDX Festival) and Toronto (Pleasure Dome) the 20th Anniversary Film Farm celebrations journey to the U.K., presented by Lux Moving Image of London! The Film Farm Lux 20th Show, curated and presented by Artistic Director and founder Philip Hoffman, includes early and recent films (16mm and digital) made at the Film Farm between 1994 and 2014. As well, Hoffman will be screening a new film, co-directed with Eva Kolcze, and sound by Joshua Bonnetta, `By the Time We Got to Expo’ (2015). For 20 years the Independent Imaging Retreat or `Film Farm’ has been developing a hands-on, artisanal approach to filmmaking that is far removed from the costly, hierarchical and inaccessible industrial model. Each summer it brings to Mount Forest Ontario a small group of interested filmmakers – some novices and some highly experienced – for an intensive week of shooting, hand-processing, tinting/toning, watching and editing film -- most of the action taking place in and around an old barn on the Normanby Township property, in rural Ontario.
- Behind this Soft Eclipse (Eve Heller, 2005, 5 min, 16mm, silen)
Shot in the Saugeen River using a special underwater housing, Behind this Soft Eclipse is a film-poem of the utmost subtlety and finesse, in which images emerge from black only to vanish again... (Chris Gehman)
- Minus (Chris Chong, 1999, 3 min, 16mm, sound)
Minus is a hand-processed, unedited stream of movements. After subtracting most of what took place before the camera, what is left is remnants of light and rhythm, traces of a body in motion. This was Chong's first 16mm film, and demonstrates the kinds of rich results that can be obtained from simple, highly restricted means and techniques. (Chris Gehman)
- We Are Going Home (Jennifer Reeves, 1998, 10 min, 16mm, optical sound)
We Are Going Home is a gorgeous surrealistic film that has all of the characteristics of the trance film and more. It is structured around a dream sequence that has no real beginning or end. The first image we see is of a vending machine dispensing ‘Live Bait’ in the form of a film canister. A woman opens the canister to find fish roe (eggs). The equation of fish roe and film, no doubt a nod to the Surrealists, opens up those ontological quandaries around mediation and truth. It is this promise of direct contact along with the return “Home” in the film’s title that gives some sign that the highly processed landscapes belong to the unconscious. (Janine Marchessault)
- Your New Pig is Down the Road (Helen Hill, 1999, 3 min, 16mm, sound)
The film is a cinematic love letter to Hill's husband Paul Gailiunas which she filmed during a summer in Ontario at Phil Hoffman's Film Farm. Hill beckons Paul Gailiunas to follow her down the road where Paul’s new pig waits. The film features their much loved daisies, their much respected Saint Francis, and their baby pig Daisy. After they were married, Paul Gailiunas and Helen Hill kept a pot bellied pig in New Orleans which they named Rosie. Helen Hill was tragically killed in 2007, in New Orleans.
- Scratch (Deirdre Logue, 1998, 3 min, 1998, 16mm, sound)
Deirdre Logue’s short and deceptively simple film, Scratch conveys the filmmaker’s physical insertion into nature only this time the experience is not sensual release, rather it is a sadomasochistic and painful journey. We read “My path is deliberately difficult”. Facing the camera, she puts thistles down her underpants, and pulls them out again. The sounds of breaking glass as well as the crackle of film splices are almost the only sounds heard in this mostly silent film. Intercut are found footage images from an instructional film, we see a bed being automatically made and unmade, glass breaking and plates smashed. This film is sharp and painful. Her body is treated like a piece of emulsion--processed, manipulated, scratched, cut to fit. (Janine Marchessault)
- Fall (Deirdre Logue, 1997, 2 min, 16mm, silent)
In Fall, Logue continues her sadomasochistic project. She falls (faints?) over and over again from different angles and in different natural locations to become one, in a humorous and bruised way, with the land. (Janine Marchessault)
- Hardwood Process (David Gatten, 1997, 14 min, 16mm, silent)
A history of scarred surfaces, an inquiry, and an imagining: For the marks we see and the marks we make, for the languages we can read and for those we are trying to learn. Reproduced by hand on an old contact printer resulting in individual, unique release prints. -David Gatten
- The Mount Forest Men’s Synchronized Swim Team Champs (Unknown Artist, 1923, 3 min, film to DV, silent)
During the demolition of the Saint Mary-Teresa Detention Center for Girls, a cache of films was discovered in a basement locker. Film Farm staff were alerted to the find and over a 5 year period have digitally restored the original print so that this visual document can be screened and celebrated. The filmmaker remains unknown.
- Captifs D'Amour (John Greyson, 2010, 5 min, 16mm to DV, sound)
Irony abound, in this split screen depiction of unjustified imprisonment. Greyson traces Jean Genet’s Un Chant d'Amour, with his own story of penguins held within the stone confines of the film farm barnyard.
- Once (Barbara Sternberg, 2007, 3 min, 16mm to DV, sound)
An excerpt from Rilke’s Ninth Elegy introduces this otherwise silent film which evokes the beauty and brevity of life. Images shimmer in an uncanny light. We catch glimpses only.
- Cicatrix (Jeremy Moss, 2014, 7 min, 16mm to DV, sound)
An experience in layers, scars, and deterioration. The image oozes, rips, and bubbles, emulating both creationist and destructive impulses.
- Strawberries in the Summertime (Jennifer Reeves, 2013, 16 min, 16mm to DV, sound)
A two and a half year old boy revels in all things tiny and huge on and around a farm. His father supports his exuberant and insatiable curiosity of new experiences– from wall climbing to discovering the natural world. As a father-son bond grows, the mother with camera observes, hangs back, dives into a solitary landscape and returns. The fleeting and glowing visual field evokes the delicate tension between distance and intimacy a mother can feel with her child. Richly toned black and white positive, negative and solarized images, combined with snippets of voice, suggest the texture of memory.
- By the Time We Got to Expo (Philip Hoffman/Eva Kolcze, 2015, 9 min, 16mm to DV, sound by Joshua Bonnetta)
A meditative journey through Expo 67, re-visiting a significant moment in Canadian history using manipulated imagery taken from educational and documentary films. Footage has been re-worked using tints, toners and photochemical techniques.
Total: 83 minutes
The Film Farm Lux 20th Anniversary Show takes place at the occasion of the LUX FILM FARM (20-21 June 2015) in the Hackney Marshes.
Tickets: £6 via Eventbrite