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Gina napolitan
06.13.2011   

The iotaWeekly - June 13 - 19, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Silence" (1968) by Jules Engel

Watch a clip from "Silence" (1968)! Master animator Jules Engel's work is always worth returning to. Elegant and deceptively simple, "Silence" gracefully traces mandala-like paths of motion to a hypnotic, meditative effect.

This film can also be found on iotaCenter's 2009 Kinetica Video Library release"Jules Engel: Selected Works, Volume I," available from The iotaStore.



Site of the Week
Barbican Art Gallery

Check out the Barbican Art Gallery, one of London's largest arts venues, and "Watch Me Move: The Animation Show," an exhibition that aims to demonstrate the centrality of animation to contemporary global culture. It is the most extensive exhibition ever mounted of the full range of animated imagery produced in the last 150 years – from Snow White and Mickey Mouse to Avatar.

Jules Engel's "Train Landscape" will be featured as part of this exhibition.





Person of the Week
Christine Marie

Christine Marie creates innovative shadow theater shows (including stereoscopic live performances) using simple lighting techniques and a variety of props. This week as a part of REDCAT's RADAR LA series, Christine Marie will be presenting her piece, Ground to Cloud, which "draw[s] on the history of electric light to manifest a flickering world of natural phenomena and human intervention."
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Gina napolitan
06.06.2011   

The iotaWeekly - June 6 - 12, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"These Hammers Don't Hurt Us" (2010) by Michael Robinson

Watch "These Hammers Don't Hurt Us" (2010)! Alternately poignant, funny, and surreal, Michael Robinson's "These Hammers Don't Hurt Us" deftly combines a variety of found footage (most notably Michael Jackson's "Remember the Time" music video and select clips of Elizabeth Taylor from the 1963 epic "Cleopatra") with stylized architectural computer graphics.

The piece has screened in a number of prominent venues this year, including Ann Arbor Film Festival, Rotterdam International Film Festival, and LA Filmforum's "Triumph of the Wild: New Experimental Animation."



Site of the Week
Kecskemét Animation Film Festival

The 10th annual Kecskemét Animation Film Festival will be taking place from June 15th through June 19th in Hungary, with the year's theme being the relationship of animation and music. Among the highlights of this year's festival is a presentation of works by Hungarian native Jules Engel (introduced by his biographer Janeann Dill, Ph.D., MFA) during the "Back to the Homeland" screening.




Person of the Week
Nancy Jean Tucker

Nancy Jean Tucker, who teaches animation classes geared towards adults at the Echo Park Film Center, creates playful and singularly imaginative digital animated works. In May 2011, Tucker curated a show of new experimental animation at EPFC featuring work by Joel Fox, Amanda Tasse, Jen Sachs, Cosmo Segurson, Jennifer Jordan Day, Alyssa Sherwood, Colin Barton, Jin A Yoon, KC Perry, Jed McGowan, Amy Lockhart, and others. Be sure to check out the music video she created for Asthmatic Kitty band Fol Chen!

For more information about Tucker and her work, please visit her website.
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Gina napolitan
05.30.2011   

The iotaWeekly - May 30 - June 5, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"FLUX" (2010) by Candas Sisman

Watch "FLUX" (2010)! Commissioned by Plato Art Space, Turkish animator Candas Sisman's "FLUX" is a virtuosic piece of computer graphics inspired by the work of sculptor İlhan Koman. With its unpredictable expansion and contraction of abstract forms, "FLUX" provides a mesmerizing visual and spatial experience for the viewer.



Site of the Week
The Masses

"The Masses is a collaboration of directors and artists united by a passion for music and driven by unique and diverse cinematic visions. Our goal is to connect with the audience, inspire the crowd, and function as a factory of ideas without losing the ideal. Within the intersection of art and commerce, we find the message and deliver it to the masses by the most powerful, visionary and authentic means possible, be it film, music, advertising, or multi-platform content.We are all connected. We, the consumers. We, the creators. The Masses creates for the fundamental spirit in all of us."
--The Masses Mission Statement




Person of the Week
Paul Sharits

Experimental filmmaker Paul Sharits stands as one of the most important figures in the structuralist film movement. His groundbreaking work is the subject of LAFilmForum's next screening at the Echo Park Film Center on June 5th. Be sure to check it out!

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Gina napolitan
05.23.2011   

The iotaWeekly - May 23-29, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Carrier" (2011) by Sharon Louden

Watch "Carrier" (2011) by Sharon Louden! "Carrier" is an animation that is about traveling through an abstract, gestural world into a natural world, and then back to the world of abstraction into infinity. By traveling through this world, Carrier attempts to challenge the viewer’s sense of proportion and implies the role of a messenger, a follower, or the viewer as the gesture itself.

"Carrier" was featured recently at the National Gallery of Art's screening "Ciné-Concert: Art in Motion!," a celebration of historical and contemporary abstract animation that included works from iotaCenter's collection.

For more information about Louden and her work, please visit her iotaCenter Member page and her website.



Site of the Week
MIT Media Lab

For the past 25 years, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab has created and funded work which incorporates science, media, and art in innovative and provocative new ways. The Media Lab regularly hosts a wide range of fascinating lectures and events, so keep an eye on their calendar of upcoming events if you're in the Boston area. There's always something there for the curious-minded.




Person of the Week
Lillian Schwartz

Among the highlights of last weekend's Orphan Film Symposium was a screening of rare work by computer animation pioneer Lillian Schwartz. The library at Ohio State University currently houses an impressive archive of her computer graphics and films, as well as her sculptures, sketches, and notebooks. Selections of her groundbreaking films are available for viewing on her website.

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Gina napolitan
05.16.2011   

The iotaWeekly - May 16 - 22, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Bermuda" (2011) by Calvin Frederick

Watch "Bermuda" by Calvin Frederick! A recent submission to iotaCenter, "Bermuda" demonstrates how much can be accomplished in-camera without the use of digital effects or compositing. Frederick generated the densely layered imagery in this film using a series of mirrors, light boxes, and a motion-control rig. The result is a nuanced, hypnotic piece of animated choreography.



Site of the Week
Cinema Project

Founded in 2003, Cinema Project hosts ecclectic avant-garde film screenings and artist lectures in Portland, Oregon. On May 17th and 18th, Cinema Project will be screening a selection of curated works from Radical Light, including iotaCenter's print of "Eneri"(1953) by Hy Hirsh and Jane Conger Belson Shimane's found footage parody of Beat culture, "Odds and Ends". Be sure to check it out if you're in the area!




Person of the Week
Christopher Maclaine

Among the other works screening as part of Cinema Project's Radical Light program is Christopher Maclaine's "The End" (1953), an anxious, fractured narrative which stands as one of only four films the artist ever made. An elusive figure, Maclaine played an important role in the San Francisco Beat scene of the 1940s and 1950s. SFMOMA's blog offers a multi-part investigation of his life and work.

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Gina napolitan
05.09.2011   

The iotaWeekly - May 9 - 15, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Flyfire" (2011) by SENSEable City Lab @ MIT

Watch "Flyfire" by SENSEable City Lab! This video is a visualization of SENSEable's intriguing Flyfire robotics project. From their website:

In its first implementation, the Flyfire project sets out to explore the capabilities of this display system by using a large number of self-organizing micro helicopters. Each helicopter contains small LEDs and acts as a smart pixel. Through precisely controlled movements, the helicopters perform elaborate and synchronized motions and form an elastic display surface for any desired scenario.

With the self-stabilizing and precise controlling technology from the ARES Lab, the motion of the pixels is adaptable in real time. The Flyfire canvas can transform itself from one shape to another or morph a two-dimensional photographic image into an articulated shape. The pixels are physically engaged in transitioning images from one state to another, which allows the Flyfire canvas to demonstrate a spatially animated viewing experience.



Site of the Week
Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA)

The Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics at Stanford University is a teaching and development lab devoted to the use of computer technology as a tool for both research and artistic practice. Their innovative work encompasses synthesis and audio coding, psychoacoustics, data sonification, music visualization, and much more.

On May 16th, the Center will be hosting a retrospective screening of works by reknowned experimental digital media artist Vibeke Sorensen. If you're in the SF Bay Area, be sure not to miss it!


Person of the Week
Peter Tscherkassky

Austrian experimental filmmaker Peter Tscherkassky has been creating meticulously crafted works since 1979. Often re-purposing found footage through optical and contact printing techniques, Tscherkassky's work expresses a formal rigor tinged with an unsettling, chaotic energy. A thoughtful overview of his films and the critical theories which motivate his work can be found here.

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Gina napolitan
05.02.2011   

The iotaWeekly - May 2 - 8, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Return of the OVC" (1989) by Visual Music Systems

Watch "Return of the OVC" by Visual Music Systems!

This video captures one of the final performances of Bill Sebastian's OVC (a.k.a. the Outer Space Visual Communicator). This specially created color organ was the manifestation of Sebastian's desire to "play light the way the best musicians play sound, to feel “light music" in his heart and simultaneously translate it into something his own senses could grasp." Originally used in the late 1970s for live concert performances with such groups as Sun Ra, Sebastian later built equipment that enabled video capture of the visualizations. Sebastian is the founder of Visual Music Systems, whose website we featured in a recent iotaWeekly.



Site of the Week
Eyebeam Art and Technology Center

"Eyebeam is an art and technology center that provides a fertile context and state-of-the-art tools for digital research and experimentation. It is a lively incubator of creativity and thought, where artists and technologists actively engage with culture, addressing the issues and concerns of our time. Eyebeam challenges convention, celebrates the hack, educates the next generation, encourages collaboration, freely offers its contributions to the community, and invites the public to share in a spirit of openness: open source, open content and open distribution."
--eyebeam.org


Person of the Week
E*Rock

Electronic musician and multi-media artist E*Rock creates frenetic, vibrant videos that playfully address issues of digital culture and visualize their accompanying audio in surprising ways. iotaCenter recently acquired E*Rock's "Triforce" DVD series--check out some of the clips in the video section of his website!

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Gina napolitan
04.25.2011   

The iotaWeekly - April 25 - May 1, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"The Night After I Kicked It" (2009) by Jane Cassidy

Watch "The Night After I Kicked It" (2009) by Jane Cassidy!

"The music and animation were composed simultaneously to create a cohesive, tightly synchronized piece. It is an abstract piece--there is no narrative, rather both elements of the composition influence eact other to create the structure and movement of the work. Within the animation the use of color, image placement on screen and the matching of images to sounds is used to create a type of associative synaesthesia."
-Jane Cassidy



Site of the Week
Anthology Film Archives 40th Anniversary

Anthology Film Archives, one of New York's great experimental film institution, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. In addition to their annual film preservation honors event, Anthology will be hosting a benefit concert at City Winery on Wednesday, April 27th. If you're in the New York area, be sure to check it out!


Person of the Week
Peter Kubelka

In the spirit of Anthology's anniversary, this week's featured artist is Peter Kubelka, one of the archive's founding fathers along with Jonas Mekas, P. Adams Sitney, Jerome Hill, and Stan Brakhage. Widely considered the originator of the flicker film, Kubelka has influenced generations of avant-garde filmmakers, not only as a practicing filmmaker himself but as an innovative theoretician.

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Gina napolitan
04.18.2011   

The iotaWeekly - April 18 - 24, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"Die Angst als Grundbefindlichkeit des Daseins" (2011) by Nikolai Gamasin

Watch "Die Angst als Grundbefindlichkeit des Daseins" (2011) by Nikolai Gamasin! The title of this piece, which roughly translates to English as "the state of fear as the reason for existence", refers to concepts addressed by German philosopher Martin Heidegger. Moody and darkly elegant, "Die Angst als Grundbefindlichkeit des Daseins" evokes an anxious atmosphere which is simultaneously disorienting and graceful.



Site of the Week
Rhythms and Visions: Expanded and Live!

In the vein of last fall's Live Visual Performance series, USC is hosting Rhythms and Visions, a fantastic program of live multi-media performances featuring abstract animation, music, and experiments in stereoscopic imaging! The program runs on Friday, April 22nd from 7:30pm to 11pm and admission is free!


Person of the Week
Paul Bush

English filmmaker Paul Bush is perhaps best known for his ingenious use of replacement animation in full-scale environments. Flickering from one image to the next, his work consistently demonstrates the agility of human perception and just how much information our minds insert between each individual film frame.

"The secret preoccupation of these films, finally, is beauty. It may be the case that the film-maker, in focusing so relentlessly on issues of time, narrative, history, the intersection of the graphic and the cinematic, and the question of clarity of presentation, doesn't himself see it but the viewer does. As if beauty were a necessary by-product of these investigations, beyond the intention of the artist, yet an inevitable result of his rigorous control and passionate pursuit of meaning." --Leslie Dick
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Gina napolitan
04.11.2011   

The iotaWeekly - April 11-17, 2011

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
Clip of the Week
"A Brief History of Title Design" (2011) by Ian Albinson

Watch "A Brief History of Title Design" (2011) by Ian Albinson! Proprietor of Art of the Title, Albinson compiled this survey of film titles for the SXSW Festival's "Excellence in Title Design" Competition. The montage begins with the straight-foward text used at the dawn of cinema and closes with the complex optical work we have become so accustomed to in contemporary film, reinforcing title design as its own complex artform.




Site of the Week
UCLA Preserved Silent Animation

The UCLA Library's Preserved Silent Animation website offers a glimpse into the freely experimental early days of animated filmmaking. This collection of eleven films showcases a variety of techniques, from Vaudevillian "lighting sketches" to early exercises in stop-motion. Each film, which is available for free download, is accompanied by historical text and notes from UCLA's film preservationists.






Person of the Week
Pat O'Neill

A master of the optical printer, virtuosic experimental filmmaker Pat O'Neill has been producing visually stunning work since the 1960s. On April 21st, O'Neill will be screening his films, including his recently restored 35mm feature "Water and Power" (1989), at the Academy Archive's Linwood Dunn theater. Event information is available at the Academy Archive website.
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