Experimental Tribute

6 Mar

Three very personal directors are being screened at Cinematheque this week under the banner ‘Experimental Tribute’. George Kuchar, Jordan Belson and Robert Breer have all contributed greatly to the various and large experimental movements in America and the world at large. All are American, all passed away towards the end of 2011, and all left a great legacy to the film world.

George Kuchar, often with his brother Mike Kuchar, was a staple in the New York underground factory scene of the 1960s where they made no-budget 8mm films. many of these films payed homage to the Hollywood melodrama films they had seen growing up, coupled with the distinct visual style the two brothers developed. Kuchar was asked to move to San Francisco where he taught film at the San Francisco Art Institute where he continued to make short films until his death in September 2011. Cinematheque will be showing Hold Me While I’m Naked (1966), Pagan Rhapsody (1970), and Wild Night in El Reno (1977).

Jordan Belson is another San Francisco-based filmmaker. Belson’s work often revolves around the Spiritual in various representations and forms. Throughout the 1950s he collaborated with Henry Jacobs and the two, along with the Morrison Planetarium, showed a series of electronic music concerts played simultaneously with images and short films of space. Screening will be Allures (1961), Cosmos (1969), Meditation (1971), Chakra (1972), Cycles (1975).

The films of key avant-garde figure and animator Robert Breer finish the night. After early experimentation in animation, and working with avant-garde artists in Europe, Breer combined a vast collection of filmic techniques to his shorts, coupled with exact rhythm and form. Fist Fight (1964), Jamestown Baloos (1957), 69 (1968), and Fuji (1974) will be shown.

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