Something Like a Dream

This selection of eight new experimental films and videos highlights the diverse approaches and concerns of contemporary film artists. Interior states are made visible and the exterior world is visibly transformed as artists grapple with things awry, in need of restoration, or simply deserving a closer look. A sense of foreboding permeates many of the works, like a dream slipping towards a nightmare. In others, we awake from the nightmare and begin dreaming. Janie Geiser's cinematic collage Ghost Algebra, an animated battlefield of fragile creatures and nervous dreams, suggests one of the original meanings of the word algebra: the science of restoring what is missing, the reunion of broken parts. In De Luce 1: Vegetare, the colors and light of a garden are transformed by Janis Crystal Lipzin's alchemical experiments with the film material and photochemical processes. Using lush black-and-white reversal film, Dominic Angerame portrays a city-our city-de-constructed, re-constructed, torn down and built up once again in The Soul of Things. What can a face reveal? Balanced between composure and collapse, individuals anxiously await their fate in Jesse McLean's Somewhere Only We Know. Arnos Tonlabor by Christophe Janetzko is a piece of musique concrète constructing a fascinating, abstract portrait of film sound-recordist Arno Wilms as he works in his studio. In People's Republic of Zoo, Sun Xun and his (Pi) Animation Studio weave beautifully hand-drawn and painted animal figures into a series of parables that, inspired by George Orwell's Animal Farm, draw on history, politics, and the natural sciences. In Marcia Scott's silent Bolinas-beautiful abstract images recalling a vision behind closed eyes or perhaps a memory of the senses-“breath gives rise to form.” Phillip Lachenmann's Shu (Blue Hour Lullaby) watches as night falls in the desert and the lights in the sky meet those that illuminate California's Security Housing Unit, where prisoners are held in solitary confinement.

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