This September, Spectacle is thrilled to welcome avant-garde filmmaker and multidisciplinary artist Maximilien Luc Proctor for two consecutive nights of films and discussion, including the first-ever NYC screening of Proctor’s 16mm works. This program was organized in collaboration with Phil Coldiron, who prefaces Proctor’s work as follows:
Lately, it can feel like a bleak joke to apply the adjective “independent” to anything related to the movies. Criticism mostly exists as content marketing for VC-backed corporations. The world of the indie narrative film is a dispiriting swamp of calling cards, and the spaces that once housed the historical avant-garde are clotted with interlopers from the blue-chip art world making work that often feels like sitting through a grant proposal. Still, there are scattered reasons for hope, chief among them the new small-scale lyricism that’s recently blossomed across Europe: films shot on 8- and 16mm with Bolexes passed between friends, processed on the cheap in cooperative labs, and shown in venues that make no promise of anything besides an audience that actually cares.
This is the context from which the Oklahoma-born, Berlin-based Maximilien Luc Proctor has emerged. Over the last few years, beyond running Ultra Dogme, a gratifyingly scrappy platform for criticism and streaming, and playing in the decidedly algorithm-unfriendly band Two Nice Catholic Boys (alongside UD editor Ruairí McCann), Proctor has produced a few dozen films, most of them single rolls of celluloid edited in camera. Ranging from the Arcadian village of Raftis to the American Southwest, he records oblique impressions with a sharp eye for composition and an intuitive sense of rhythm, gently arguing in favor of the minor and the fleeting. This early-career survey brings together a selection of his shorts along with the digital feature, SREĆAN PUT, and offers a rare opportunity to chart the ongoing refinement of a young artist’s craft in real time.
Program 1: Nested Focus
Friday September 22nd, 19:30h with Maximilien Luc Proctor in person for Q+A!
- All The Best (2022. 3 min. 16mm.)
- Cruces (2023. 6 min. 16mm.)
- Washington (Untitled) (2022. 4 min. 16mm.)
- Fluid Dynamics: Steady Flow (2022. 4 min. 16mm.)
- Fluid Dynamics: Unsteady Flow (2022. 2 min. 16mm.)
- Rafti(s) (2022. 2 min. 16mm.)
- (against interpretation) (2023. 4 min. 16mm.)
- Fluid Fragments (2023. 4 min. 16mm.)
Program 2: Happy Trails
Saturday September 23rd, 19:30h with Maximilien Luc Proctor in person for Q+A!
- the sound of the sky reflected in water (2021. 3 min. Super 8mm-to-digital.)
- summercycle iii (2022. 3 min. Super 8mm-to-digital.)
- summercycle iv (2023. 3 min. Super 8mm-to-digital.)
- Srećan Put (Happy Trails) (2021. 93 min. Digital.)
Maximilien Luc Proctor is a French-American filmmaker, critic and curator. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with honors in Film and Media Studies in 2014 before moving to Heidelberg, where he shot his first feature film, FRAGMENTS OF A MEMORY OF A FILM, while working as a barista and karaoke host. In 2017 he moved to Berlin and completed his second feature film, SREĆAN PUT, in 2021. He records music in the band Two Nice Catholic Boys and co-hosts a monthly analog screening salon with Christian Flemm. He is the founder and co-editor of Ultra Dogme, and the avant-garde instructor for Berlin’s Art-on-the-Run film school.
The filmmaker would like to give special thanks to the people who helped make these films possible: phili c, Christian Flemm, Ruairí McCann, Martin Bremer, Malkah Manouel, Florian Weigl, Nicholas Christenson, Tijana Perović, Oath, Valentin Duceac, Bali Govindarajan, Big Waves of Pretty, Bobi, and my families