MassArt Film Society: Maya Deren & Stan Brakhage
Wednesday April 20th 2011, 20h
Massachusetts College of Art, Film Department
Screening room 1. 621 Huntington Ave. Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA
Meditation on violence by Maya Deren & Song 23 The 23rd Psalm Branch by Stan Brackhage
Meditation on violence (Maya Deren, 1948)
With Chao Li Chi and music by Teiji Ito
As the movements of Chinese boxing is "forward" some metaphysical concepts of physical, MEDITATION ON VIOLENCE film is, in cinematic terms, a discussion of these concepts using physical movement as a visual means among others. The film begins and ends in the middle of a movement to make it as a visual slice of life, whereas it was and will be at infinity. Respiratory rate, alternating negative / positive, is maintained during approaches and withdrawals from the boxer facing the camera
23rd Psalm Branch (Stan Brakhage, 1966-78)
One of experimental great Stan Brakhage's best known but least seen films, 23rd Psalm Branch is a feature-length entry in his Songs series. It is both a beautiful, lyrical work and perhaps his most political film.
Brakhage combines his own images of Colorado, found footage of war, and some of his earliest hand-painting on film to create a work that is rich with meaning and a key artistic milestone for him. Shot in 8mm and later blown up to 16mm, Song 23 is an extended meditation on war in society, made in response to the war in Vietnam. It is a haunting work, still relevant in it theme and one of Brakhages masterworks. Author P. Adams Sitney wrote that "it is an apocalypse of imagination".