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REF NO.: 110

SUBJECT: SWGC: Art Gallery embarks on film festival and exhibition series
DATE: Nov. 17, 2005

The Sir Wilfred Grenfell Art Gallery is about to undertake an ambitious film festival and exhibition series which will support the creation of a “film culture.”

Beginning Tuesday, November 22, the gallery will simultaneously celebrate the opening of a video-based exhibition, as well as embark on a three-month film festival.

Pierre LeBlanc, visual arts instructor, said that in terms of visual culture, film offers its viewers the possibility of seeing a work the very way it was intended by its author(s).

“This is important in regions where galleries and venues are not numerous,” said Mr. LeBlanc. “It offers instructors a unique tool to discuss and critique the creative process in terms of both aesthetics and process in a manner that is difficult to achieve with photographic reproductions of artists’ work.”

The recent movement towards establishing a film studies program on the Grenfell campus makes this festival a timely endeavor.

“The most important part of establishing a film school anywhere is the creation of a ‘film culture’,” says Mr. LeBlanc. “Though students are well versed in wide release Hollywood cinema, it will be a treat for them to experience more challenging expressions from both contemporary and traditional artists. These works will provide a platform to discuss and reflect on narrative structure and the various processes that intervene between an idea and its realization.”

Gallery director Gail Tuttle says the Art Gallery at Grenfel lCollege serves as catalyst for the dissemination and interpretation of cutting edge contemporary art.

“Film, video and new media are important avenues of expression for artists, but they are forms of visual art that may not be well understood or appreciated by the community,” she says. “It is part of our mandate to provide the public with opportunities to consider art they will not see elsewhere in the region. The gallery will provide program notes, catalogue essays and a number of outreach activities to bring the public in touch with the artist’s meaning and purpose for creating the films and videos. We will offer recent historical context for the festival with a series of Canadian films from the 60s and 70s. And we will continue to offer our program of talks, tours, activities and gallery visits to special interest groups and high school art classes that are unique in the region.”

Installations

Philip Jonlin Lee’s video installation Long Ride Home will open with a reception in the gallery on November 22.

In her essay about Philip Jonlin Lee’s installation, independent curator Rhonda Corvese writes: “Long Ride Home is a profound visualization of the experience of trauma. …the viewer encounters a conversation between two people on a car, driving at night through an urban landscape. The viewer is aware of the male protagonist driving the car, only by way of the conversation. Lee isolates the nuances of subjective perception by focusing the camera solely of the female protagonist sitting beside the driver, thus structuring the work to expose unsettling moments of personal trauma.”

In addition to Long Ride Home, the installation includes a continuous screening of videos selected from recent works by Philip Jonlin Lee. This installation will continue until December 23.

In 2006, Long Ride Home will be replaced by Sandy Amerio’s Hear me, children-yet-to-be-born, an installation and video series in the gallery, January 9 to February 4.

Hear me, children-yet-to-be-bornis a new experimental work shot entirely in Death Valley. The installation splices a strange contemporary narrative and the majestic, timeless environment of the American desert, drawing from such seemingly diverse sources as the business world, the Bible and the events of September 11, 2001. Sandy Amerio is a video artist, photographer and writer who lives and works in Paris. The production of Hear me, children-yet-to-be-born was supported in part by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the French Ministry of Culture.

Film screening series

In conjunction with the opening of Long Ride Home on November 22, the first of five film screenings will be held. Titled Deserted Streets at Midday, this screening consists of eight films by contemporary Canadian film artists – Leslie Peters, Beautiful Lies; Daniel Cockburn, Stupid Coalescing Becomers; Jeremy Bailey, Strongest Man; Deirdre Logue, That Beauty; Jennifer Norton, Excess; Steve Reinke, Anthology of American Folk Songs; Benny Nemerofsky Ramsey and Cooper Battersby, Untitled; and Emily Chhangur, Quenched.

Subsequent screenings include: November 29 – Joyce Wieland, Reason Over Passion; January 10 and 24 – two-part screening of Brisk Collages and Bricolages; and January 31, Split Decisions, a video series curated by Paul Wong.

The final film screening on February 3 will be the gala closing event – the presentation of a Student Film and Video night, featuring films by Grenfell students. A closing reception will be hosted by the gallery.

All screenings will take place at 7 p.m. in the lecture theatre of the Library and ComputingBuilding, LC301.

An addendum of the installation and screening schedule is attached below. This installation and screening series is made possible through collaborations with the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre, Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery, and Vtape, a Toronto-based distribution, exhibition and resource centre with an emphasis on the contemporary media.


ADDENDUM:

Film and video festival – Schedule of installations and screenings

November 23 to February 4

A collaboration with Vtape, Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre and MountSaint VincentUniversityArtGallery

Gallery Installation: Philip Jonlin Lee

Long Ride Home

Installation and video series continuous screening in the gallery

November 21 to December 23, 2005

Screening: Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak

Deserted Streets at Midday

Screening series

November 22 @ 7 p.m. in LC 301

Screening: Joyce Wieland

Reason Over Passion

November 29 @ 7 p.m. in LC301

Gallery Installation: Sandy Amerio

Hear me, children-yet-to-be-born

Installation and video series continuous screening in the gallery

January 9 to February 4, 2006

Screening: Brisk Collages and Bricolages

Screening series with curator/artist’s talk

First 2-hour screening

January 10 @ 7 p.m. in LC 301

Screening: Second 2-hour screening, Brisk Collages and Bricolages

Jannuary 24 @ 7 p.m. in LC301

Screening: Split Decisions

Screening series curated by Paul Wong

January 31@ 7 p.m. in LC301

Gala closing event:

Screening: Student Film and Video night

Reception hosted by the gallery on February 3, 2006

*From the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre:

Jack Chambers film series and Michael Snow film series (Location and dates TBA)

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