A compilation of works by Stan Brakhage (1933-2003) who was inspired by filmmaker, writer and voodoo princess Maya Deren (1916-1971). His oeuvre is a poetic metaphor for the visual and an investigation into the expressive power of the medium itself.
Music: Blues by Duke Garwood, ‘London’s leading exponent of the wheezy broke-down blues’ (The Mirror) http://www.dukegarwood.co.uk.
We will screen:
Meshes of the Afternoon, by Maya Deren, 1943, USA, 14 min. One of the most influential works in American experimental cinema. A non-narrative work, it has been identified as a key example of the “trance film,” in which a protagonist appears in a dreamlike state, and where the camera conveys his or her subjective focus.(MOMA)
Window Water Baby Moving, by Stan Brakhage, 1959, USA, 12 min. It captures the birth of Jane and Stan Brakhage’s first child in a home delivery that paralleled the film’s own resolutely independent, homemade form. As he recalled, We both knew that I could be most there if I were creating a film as she was giving birth.(v2)
Mothlight, by Stan Brakhage, 1963, USA, 4 min. As Brakhage explains in the remarks on this film that he recorded in 2002, mere months before he passed away from cancer the following year, Mothlight was a product of intense angst that he was feeling at the time, as his consuming passion for making films that were utterly non-commercial, obscure and perplexing to most viewers was costing him dearly in his personal life. (criterionreflections.blogspot.nl)
Murder Psalm, by Stan Brakhage, 1981, USA, 16 min. Here Stan Brakhage focuses on a largely abstract and elliptical depiction of the mysterious impulses that lead to violence. Much of the film is composed of sequences seemingly recorded off of a TV set, from news broadcasts or movies, the colors of the images dull and muted, caked in static and fuzz, so that only the vaguest outlines and impressions of the underlying image still show through. (seul-le-cinema.blogspot.nl)
Dog Star Man: Part IV, by Stan Brakhage, 1964, USA 6 min. What one sees here is the river, a panorama of moons, suns, trees, man, dog, sex; of cosmos and of micro-organism; a moving accumulation of image into abstraction and abstraction into image, a panorama representing four and one-half hours of intense visual experience. (people.wcsu.edu)
Water for Maya, by Stan Brakhage, 2000, 2 min. A tribute to Maya Deren seen while creating the documentary IN THE MIRROR.