|Welcome to our website for our ongoing series of experimental cinema in San Francisco. We show films every Saturday at ATA Gallery, 992 Valencia (@ 21st). Showtime 8:30pm, admission* $6 .|
|SAT. 2/16: VALENTINE EROTICA: KYLE HENRY’S FOURPLAY + GUY MADDIN +
OC celebrates the Valentine spirit with an inaugural devoted to erotic love, gay and straight. Director Kyle Henry flies in from Chicago to introduce his acclaimed omnibus feature, Fourplay. We show the last two of Henry’s provocative short stories—Tampa, and appropriately, San Francisco; here from the cast are Chloe and Christeene. PLUS Guy Maddin’s The Little White Cloud that Cried, Casey McManis’ hand-processed Super-8 Folsom Street Fair, Julia Ostertag’s Sex Junkie, Oscar Perez’ Pacifier, and Naomi Uman’s Removed. The irrepressible Cookie Tongue opens, fronting a montage of archival porn. Free red wine, condoms, and a pre-show peek at a Jack Smith/Gerard Malanga tryst. Co-sponsored by Frameline. $7.
|BLACK MUSICAL HISTORY|
|SAT. 2/23: AFRO-FUTURISM: SUN RA + SODA_JERK’S ASTRO BLACK +
We celebrate Black History Month with a focus on African-American musical contributions, notably those associated with Afro-Futurism. The West Coast premiere of Soda_Jerk’s complete Astro Black suite is a half-hr. collage-narrative of wildly juxtaposed scenes, from vaudeville through electronica to UFOs. PLUS Cauleen Smith’s masterful choreography of a Chicago marching band’s public performance of a Sun Ra composition. ALSO: three rare Sun Ra segments expressing his way-out sci-fi cosmology, righteous clips of Muhammad Ali and a 10 year-old Michael Jackson, and an irresistibly funky chunk from that classic 16mm time-capsule Black Music in America—Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Nina Simone, B.B. King, et. al.
|SAT. 3/2: LET ME BE YOUR BAND + FORSTER + PLOTNICK + IDAHO JOE +
Twist and stomp through the eccentric world of One-Man-Bands! This heart-pumping plunge off a curvy West Virginia highway leads to the infamous Rockabilly-Wild-Man Hasil Adkins and other misfit innovators: Bob Log III, former bus-driver-turned-punk Delta Blues man; Washboard Hank on his kitchen sink tuba; and the Mysterious Asthmatic Avenger. Witness Eric Royer’s self-built 5-piece bluegrass band, the Lonesome Organist, and King Louie, the hurricane of sound! The NorCal debut of this feature doc is preceded by local solo acts: guest emcee Russ Forster, the precocious Henry Plotnick, and the marvelous singing-bowls of Idaho Joe. $7.
| SAT. 3/9: NEW HAITIAN CINEMA: FRAGMENTATION AND FLUX
Three years after a devastating earthquake, the Haitian people still struggle to rebuild, both physically and culturally. In a benefit for Jakmel Art Center, OC joins Ilona Berger and Ivy McClelland in mounting a forum for new film and video. Jean-Guerly Pétion initiates the show with a multi-media dance piece. Désirée Dorsainvil sets off the second half with original choreography, drawn from both Afro-Haitian and Modern traditions. Recent émigré Zaka sojourns from SoCal to personally introduce his new video work. ALSO: Maksaens Denis, Louis Ebby Angel, Guy Regis Jr., Romel Jean-Pierre, and Alex Art Louis from TeleGhetto. Come early for artists’ reception with world-renowned rum. $7–$20.
|SAT. 3/16: OLIVIA WYATT’S STARING INTO THE SUN + MARK BRECKE +
The second of our Foreign Correspondents sessions proffers the NorCal premiere of Olivia Wyatt’s sublime ethnography, Staring Into the Sun. She penetrated deep into East African indigenous culture to retrieve this hr.-long album of Ethiopian tribal rites and musics, published by Sublime Frequencies. OC’s old comrade Mark Brecke opens with Somalia in the Picture, on conditions on the ground in Somalia and Kenya. Mark is spending some three years in the Horn of Africa, documenting the more urbanized history of Somalia’s motion-picture industry. He discusses the colonial past and the current political crisis, with fragments from newsreels, video reportage, and even a slideshow of Somali postcards. $7.
|FOCUS ON LOCUS|
|SAT. 3/23: WESTERN PSYCHO-GEOGRAPHIES + JACKIE-O MOTHERFUCKER +
Focusing on the American West, four premieres, all, in fact, by women: Kathryn Ramey’s 16mm West: What I Know About Her retraces a 19th Century trek to the Northwest. Marcy Saude’s Sangre de Cristo explores the rich cultural terrain around that famous New Mexican range. Oregonian Vanessa Renwick arrives to debut her Portland Meadows, a meticulously-observed essay on that racetrack, and Brigid McCaffrey affords AM/PM, an engagement with a displaced gold miner. PLUS Bill Daniel’s Texas City, Greta Snider’s Urine Man, and the Jackie-O quartet, in dialogue with multiple film projections, including David Wojnarowicz' famously banned Mexican travelog. $7.
| SAT. 3/30: ADAM PARFREY’S RITUAL AMERICA
In the first part of our Secret Agents diptych, Mr. Parfrey jets in from Washington state to introduce his rogue publication with a riveting 50-min. slideshow. Adam foregrounds the major groups, players, and beliefs in this provocative exposé of American fraternal and religious organizations. He answers any and all questions, and signs this and other books from his Feral House imprint. PLUS curious footage of the Masons, Mormons, Moose Lodgers, Shriners, Legionnaires, and even Druids! Come early for reception and booksigning. $6.66.
|ART OF THE RIDICULOUS|
|SAT. 4/6: DOUG HARVEY'S PATAPHYSICAL INTERROGATION TECHNIQUES
Second in our Secret Agents suite, LA Weekly critic Doug Harvey zooms in, also with a book launch—in fact, a party—to celebrate his anthology of sublimely ridiculous rants and paranoid analyses. His crackpot-genius PITA compendium gleefully crosses conspiracy theory with avant-garde literature. Doug’s readings address absurd art pranks and mistranslations: Averty’s Ubu Roi, Turkish Star Wars, Benny Lava’s mis-subtitled music videos, and Craig Baldwin’s Tribulation 99 (16mm excerpt). PLUS an inquiry into the “Rock Books” of über-fabulist Richard Shaver, detailing the Alphabet of the Ancients. Free beer. $6.66.
|SAT. 4/13: MARC OLMSTED & THE JOB + FORSTER + OCTOPLAYER + +
Beat-punk poet Marc Olmsted celebrates the literary impulse in the media arts with his kit bag of books, movies, and musical instruments. Eclectic combo The Job creates rhythmic support for his spoken word. PLUS Olmsted films Burroughs on Bowery, American Mutant, and a section from his new one, The Count. Guest emcee Ben Wood—as Eadweard Muybridge—opens with a Magic Lantern vignette, Russ Forster riffs on 16rpm and 78rpm in his Revolutions Per Minute, Thad Povey and Mark Taylor demo their 8-tiered turntable, and a Quintron clip showcases his photo-electric disco device. ALSO Will Erokan, Jorge Lorenzo, and David Cox on Optigan.
|SAT. 4/20: JOHN DAVIS + JIM HAYNES/ALLISON HOLT’S SIGNAL MOUNTAIN +
Sound artist John Davis patches together a smart stack of oscillators to generate original tracks to three peculiar 16mm artifacts: A pair of anomalous educationals on Electromagnetism precedes the world premiere of Craig Baldwin’s double-projection Nth Dimension. Allison Holt and Jim Haynes’ Signal Mountain is another world premiere, the astute edit of their recent SFMOMA performance. A delicious selection of 3D pieces includes Lillian Schwartz, Slavko Vorkapich, and Kerry Laitala’s latest. PLUS Phil Patiris, DJ Spooky, and TV Sheriff. $7.
|ANIMATION IN ACTION|
|SAT. 4/27: JEREMY ROURKE + COLBURN + KLAHR + GEISER +
Back by popular demand is the spirited person of Jeremy Rourke, conjuring musical complements to three extraordinary animations: the debut of his own Walk Long Inside Upon Your Land, the exquisite Mulching Emulsion, and Dave Fleischer’s 1928 Koko Goes Ghosting. We honor the recently deceased Gerry Anderson with a section from Thunderbirds Are Go!, plus Philip Stapp’s Tanguy-esque Picture in Your Mind (on 16mm). As to the new generation: Martha Colburn’s Colony Collapse Disorder, Jodie Mack’s August Song, Nina Paley’s This Land Is Mine, Omer Gal’s Sap, Janie Geiser’s Lost Motion, and Lewis Klahr’s Creased Robe Smile. Joel Schlemowitz kicks in a collage-homage to illustrator extraordinaire Ms. Dame Darcy.
|INSIDE THE MACHINE|
|SAT. 5/4: MEGAN PRELINGER’S ELECTRONICS AND THE MODERN CENTURY +
Archivist, author, and Prelinger Library principal, Megan Prelinger graces us again with her hr.-long W-i-P slide-show on the visualization of 20th Century electronic technology. Anticipating her forthcoming book, Megan has unearthed modernist artists who ushered in the Electronic Age with their visionary graphics, demonstrating that design and technology were mutual contextualizers in the mid-century Modern era. After her interactive show-and-tell, these excerpts of post-war 16mm films also bear on tonight’s theme: IBM’s 1953 Piercing the Unknown, Colossus: The Forbin Project, the supremely campy 1945 Principles of Electricity, Philco’s 1967 Year 1999, and even an outrageous clip of Orson Welles in the seminal Future Shock.
|5/11: CHRISTIAN DIVINE'S SATURDAY NITE DRIVE-IN SPECTACULAR
Cult-film expert Christian Divine trucks in with a cavalcade of clips about the uniquely American phenomenon of the Drive-In Movie. The final frontier of guerrilla showmanship, drive-ins exploited a lurid repertoire of Hollywood actioners and independent grindhouse fare. The activity was ritualized around the automobile, and the romance of expansive viewing under the stars was counterpointed by violence and copious sex on the super wide screen (and in the back seats). Representative titles like Billy Jack, Smokey and the Bandit, Wild Angels, Blood Feast, Night Call Nurses, and Destroy All Monsters are organized into a prototypical Saturday-night al fresco experience, compressing years of film- and car-culture into Christian’s wildly entertaining—and obsessively researched—lecture-demo. Free popcorn. $7
|SAT. 5/18: BILL BROWN’S BOOK LAUNCH / RETRO
Mr. Brown delights us with his personal appearance, in from North Carolina with a charming “how-to” volume, Action! The artist-author reads from this self-illustrated guide to film- and video-making, and also from the latest issue of his beloved travel ‘zine, Dream Whip. Bill then introduces an inspiring mid-career overview of his personal documentaries, headlined by the West Coast premiere of Memorial Land, a careful consideration of architectural sites honoring the 9/11 dead. ALSO: Chicago Corner, Confederation Park, Mountain State, and his recent Document, a laser-printer-to-16mm rendering of a redacted CIA text. Q&A, toast and jam, and books available!
|AVANT TO LIVE|
|SAT. 5/25: NEW EXPERIMENTAL WORKS
Here’s an energized evening of new cinema that champions personal expression and radical form. Constituting the season’s most exploratory programming initiative—and with more than a dozen of the makers in person—are Salise Hughes’ Charade, Kelly Sears’ The Rancher, Brook Hinton’s Slow Force Glimpse, Pablo Marin’s Denkbuilder, Heidi Phillips’ Art Composition, David Cox’ Do Others, and Daniel Corona’s Bedroom. PLUS recent pieces by Anne McGuire, Jeanne Finley, Linda Scobie, Bryan Boyce, Doug Katelus, and a new movie by Miles Votek, Zander Mackie, and Ben Fash. Lana Voronina delivers the deathblow with her New World Order Rave Mom performance. Come early for artists’ reception, free pencils, and the Dream Machine!