Canyon Cinema Luminaries 2016: Chick Strand - Celebrations & Restorations
Introduction and post-screening discussion with Irina Leimbacher
Irina Leimbacher is a film scholar, curator and professor of film at Keene State College in New Hampshire. She is co-founder of kino21 and was the curator of the 2009 Flaherty Film Seminar.
Several of Chick Strand’s films have been recently restored by the Academy of Motion Pictures, including Soft Fiction that screened at last fall’s NYFF Projections program. Tonight I-House continues its Canyon Cinema Luminaries series with a celebration of Strand’s work and restorations. Co-founder of Canyon with Bruce Baillie in the early 1960s, Chick Strand (1931-2009) is most known for her exuberant experimental vision, her handheld moving 16mm camera, and her feminist engagement with women’s lives and experience. These screenings are in conjunction with Haverford College’s ‘Strange Truth’ screening of Chick Strand’s film ‘Soft Fiction’ on February 10, 2016, at the Bryn Mawr Film Institute.
PROGRAM 1: CELEBRATING
and the Monsters
(1966, 3 min), Angel Blue Sweet Wings (1966, 3 min) and Waterfall (1967,
6 min) are Strand’s first films, the former made while she was still living in
Berkeley, California and the latter two when she first moved to Los Angeles In
the partly autobiographical Elasticity (1976, 25 mins, color), Strand
brings together diverse images and voices to evoke her search for self, thus
"decentering the first-person voice, distributing it among a number of
speakers" (David James). Mixing found and her own footage, Cartoon Le
Mousse (1979, 15 mins, B&W) is a reflection on storytelling that
includes “defective facsimiles and counterfeits" to which its sensuous
finale is opposed. A "new narrative" film, Coming Up for Air (
1986, 27 mins. color ) based on the visions of magic realism in an Anglo
context. Finally, her films Kristallnacht (1979, 7 mins, B&W),
"dedicated to the tenacity of the human spirit," and Fever Dream
(1979, 7 mins, B&W), "a wet hot dream about sensuality" (CS),
contain some of Strand's most sensuously beautiful images.
All films preserved by the Academy Film Archive