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Wesleyan University | Center for the Humanities


Locating Living History in Process Cinema Poster


Locating Living History in Process Cinema


Janine Marchessault • York University

March 1st @ 6 P.M.
Zoom Conference: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/98396636283

What is called “handmade” and “process” cinema stretches back to film’s very
beginnings: experimental pioneers such as Len Lye, Mary Ellen Bute, Isidore Isou and
Norman McLaren developed various handmade practices from the 1930s onward to
create documents imbued with the physical imprints of place and temporality. Over the
last twenty years, the significant resurgence of hand processed celluloid filmmaking can
be understood as a response to the rise of the digital, and the subsequent transformation
of the analogue into an artist’s medium. This talk will engage with how artists are using
film archives to disrupt traditional forms of history, collection and national narrative. I
look at what opportunities and ways of working with archives are coming to inform new
approaches to celluloid and digital media that are collective, collaborative and
performative. I argue that archives used in this way foster new ecologies of entanglement
that are generating more complex epistemological models of memory and place.

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