Media Arts Preview: Data Sculptures, Future Paranoia and a Muted Trumpet

Raft of the Medusa

This week's media art projects feature clarinets, a muted trumpet, hand processing, future paranoia, Method acting and sculptures driven by data.

Friday, September 23
Blum & Poe presents Sharon Lockhart's film Podwarka in the gallery's upstairs space. The elegant 31-minute film is made up of six unmoving shots showing courtyards in Lodz, Poland where children play. The film is an amazing study in color, texture, movement and the frame. The show opens with a reception tonight, 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m., and will be on view through October 29, 2011.

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Getting GraphicGetting Graphic: This History of Graphic Design in Queer Activism, the first in a series of three events titled Cruising the Archive: Queer Art and Culture in Los Angeles, 1945-1980, presents iconic examples of gay and lesbian activist graphics from the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives located on Adams Boulevard here in Los Angeles. The event includes a lecture by graphic design scholar Nate Schulman and an overview of the ONE archive by archivist Loni Shibuyama at 11:00 a.m., followed by a hands-on workshop focusing on graphic design and the use of typography for activist media at 1:00 p.m. Participants will also be invited to tour the ONE Archive. Admission is free, and the event takes place at USC's Kerkhoff Hall on Adams Boulevard.

Machine ProjectorMachine Projector is an evening of audio/visual performances that will take place tonight at Machine Project in which four artists - Daniel Eaton, Justin Asher, Paul Fraser and Kevin Blechdom - combine sound and images live. Asher's People With the Playback Device attempts to create with sound what Dziga Vertov's Man With a Movie Camera achieves with vision, while Fraser's Still Breathes is a "spiraling, sprawling video work for contrabass clarinet, guitar feedback and muted trumpet." The show starts at 8:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 24
The Echo Park Film Center presents a workshop titled Introduction to Super 8 and Hand Processing, led by Rich Bahto. It will introduce participants to basic Super 8 camera operation, shooting techniques and hand processing. The workshop starts at noon, and continues until 5:00 p.m.

Dani LeventhalSunday, September 25
Los Angeles Filmforum presents Vital Signs: Videos by Dani Leventhal. Curated by Genevieve Yue, the show features two world premieres, and gives viewers a chance to see what is described as vital work: "Her camera is inquisitive and ever-present, a companion as much as a tool in the artist's unyielding search for signs of life." The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Echo Park Film Center.

UCLA's Slovenia Begs to Differ compilation of films from the Republic of Slovenia continues tonight with the 1980 film Raft of the Medusa, directed by Karpo Aćimović-Godina. The film is described as a significant contribution to Slovenian and Yugoslav cinema as it "burst onto the scene in 1980 and re-introduced modernism, asserting a wonderful, nihilistic rebellion against all canons." The film screens at 7:00 p.m.

Chick Strand WaterfallMonday, September 26
LA avant-garde filmmaker Chick Strand passed away in 2009, leaving behind several unfinished films, including Señora con Flores/Woman with Flowers, which was recently completed according to Strand's intentions. REDCAT presents this 15-minute film, as well as several of Strand's films restored by the Pacific Film Archive and the Academy Film Archive with the support of the National Film Preservation Foundation. They include Waterfall, Mosori Monika, Kristallnacht and Cartoon Le Mousse. The show starts at 8:30 p.m.

Rainer Werner Fassbinder's World on a Wire is described as "a gloriously cracked, boundlessly inventive 1973 take on future paranoia," and screens tonight at Cinefamily at 7:30 p.m.

Dan GoodsThe Digital Studies Symposium presents Dan Goods, Visual Strategist for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Goods' work includes large, pubic interactive media projects that communicate scientific ideas, as well as more personal art projects. For his presentation, Goods will focus on a new interactive installation, Beneath the Surface: NASA's Juno Mission to Jupiter, currently on view at the Pasadena Museum of California Art, as well as eCLOUD, a dynamic, data-driven sculpture installed at the San Jose International Airport. The talk starts at 7:00 p.m. in the Ron Howard Screening Room of USC's Robert Zemeckis Center for Digital Arts, 3131 South Figueroa.

FerroTuesday, September 27
Cinefamily presents An Evening With Pablo Ferro, celebrating the creator of some of the best film title sequences ever designed. The LA-based graphic designer began his career in the 1960s, and created the iconic hand-drawn titles for Dr. Strangelove and Clockwork Orange, as well as the dazzling collage sequence in The Thomas Crown Affair. Ferro will present titles, trailers, animations and unscreened shorts, and answer questions from the audience. The show starts at 8:00 p.m.

Self MadeWednesday, September 28
The Hammer Museum presents Gillian Wearing's film Self Made, in which the artist invited people to "attend a Method acting workshop to explore their fantasy selves and ultimately star in their own mini-film." The screening begins at 7:00 p.m.

About the Author

Holly Willis teaches in USC's School of Cinematic Arts and writes about new media art. She is the author of "New Digital Cinema: Reinventing the Moving Image" and editor of "The New Ecology of Things" on pervasive computing.
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