Pioneers of cine-dance

— session #1 Free Radicals

Wednesday at Galeria Zé dos Bois (Rua da Barroca, 59)
Friday at ZDB 8 Marvila (Praça David Leandro da Silva, 2)

Arledge Introspection, Sara Kathryn
Element, 1973, Amy Greenfield
Tall Arches, 1974 Doris Chase
Themes et variations, 1928, Germaine Dulac
Arabesque for Kenneth Anger, 1961, Marie Menken

Session #1 of the film cycle Free Radicals: dance experiences in experimental cinema programmed by Bárbara Janicas.

All sessions of the cycle take place on Wednesdays, 7pm, at ZDB, and will be repeated on Fridays of the same week, at 10pm, at ZDB 8 Marvila.

Session presented by Bárbara Janicas.

Thèmes et variations
Germaine Dulac, 1928
16mm, b&w, sil., 9min

“Everything dances in nature (Examples: A head in a car, its hair blowing in the wind. A tree shaken by the breeze. Flowers, birds, clouds, grasses… Certain animals, children’s balloons, fabrics, even machines, above all.”
– Germaine Dulac

A study in choreography for camera
Maya Deren, 1945
16mm, b&w, sil., 3min

“I conceived this film as a sample of cine-dance – that is, a dance so closely linked to the camera and editing that it cannot be ‘performed’ as such anywhere else than in this particular film. (…) I sincerely hope that cine-dance will develop rapidly and that, as a result of this development, a new era of collaboration will begin between dancers and filmmakers – during which they will unite their energies and creative talents in the service of an integrated art form.”
– Maya Deren

Ritual in transfigured time
Maya Deren, 1946
16mm, b&w, sil., 15min

“Ritual in transfigured time” deepens this idea of creating dance from external elements. Apart from Rita Christiani and Frank Westbrook, none of the people who appear in the film are dancers and, apart from one brief sequence, the movements performed are not dance movements. What makes this film a dance film is that all the movements – stylised, incidental or detailed – are directly linked to each other as part of a whole that is the film, according to a choreographic concept.”
– Maya Deren

Visual Variations on Noguchi
Marie Menken, 1945
Digital, b&w, sound, 4min

“The great feat of Menken’s cinema is the reconciliation between the pleasure of discovering chance and meticulous craftsmanship. She was the first American filmmaker to invent a range of automatisms capable of producing remarkable films. She achieved unprecedented freedom by moving around with the camera in her hand, incorporating hesitations, accidents and even mistakes into the construction of montage rhythms.”
– P. Adams Sitney

Arabesque for Kenneth Anger
Marie Menken, 1961
Digital, color, sound, 4min

“She watched through the camera, a small camera, and I guided her as she moved so she wouldn’t trip and fall. I was behind her, we were a kind of tandem (…), Marie danced with her camera. She had a dancing eye and marvellous attention to detail.”
– Kenneth Anger

Sara Kathryn Arledge, 1946
Digital, color, sound, 6min

“In creating this film, I invested myself entirely in it: my eyes, my feelings, my intuition and my critical spirit. (…) I tried to use my imagination to arouse serene but conscious reflection in the audience, which would be the opposite of something like a hypnotic trance.”
– Sara Kathryn Arledge

Amy Greenfield, 1973
16mm, b&w, sil., 11min30

“A visceral film like few others, Element is a classic of avant-garde dance films, in the tradition of female directors who use their own naked bodies to make a powerful visual statement of femininity.”
– Collectif Jeune Cinéma

Tall Arches
Doris Chase, 1974
16mm, color, sound, 6min40

“This film was made from a show by Mary Staton whose choreography incorporated sculptures by Doris Chase: three mobile arches in the shape of a nest. The film is much more than a simple capture of the show; through the use of an optical printer, Doris Chase creates colourful silhouettes that fit together and appear as multiple shadows of the dancers.”
– Collectif Jeune Cinéma

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