Jonas Mekas presents Flux Party

Date: 17 October 2008 | Season: Jonas Mekas, Miscellaneous | Tags: ,

Friday 17 October 2008, 11:15pm til late
London Rio Cinema

Legendary artist-filmmaker Jonas Mekas presents Flux Party featuring the complete Fluxus film anthology as assembled by George Maciunas, rare Fluxus audio and a few surprises. This special late night screening on the big screen of East London’s splendid art deco picture palace includes films by George Brecht, Dick Higgins, Yoko Ono, Nam June Paik, Paul Sharits and Wolf Vostell. Jonas Mekas will be in attendance to discuss Fluxus and his friend and fellow Lithuanian émigré, the late George Maciunas, and Ben Vautier will show rare Fluxus performance footage.

George Maciunas & others, 1962-70, 120 min

Curated by Mark Webber and Anne-Sophie Dinant. Organised by the South London Gallery.


We Dig Repetition: Peter Roehr

Date: 24 November 2009 | Season: Miscellaneous

Tuesday 24 November 2009, at 7:30pm
New York Light Industry

“I alter material by organizing it unchanged. Each work is an organized area of unchanged elements. Neither successive or additive, there is no result or sum.” (Peter Roehr, 1964)

You might think that Andy Warhol took pleasure in endless repetition, but he’s got nothing on Peter Roehr, a German artist whose brief career produced hundreds of works using type, photography, collage, film and audiotape. Not content with applying mechanical reproduction techniques to art-making, Roehr instead chose to appropriate industrially produced materials. His many photo collages present austere grids of identically cropped images from magazines. Similarly, his film and sound montages are constructed from brief passages, frequently drawn from commercial advertising, repeated without variation, for an irregular number of reiterations. The result is an insistent, hypnotic demonstration of stoic seriality that takes time and time again.

Peter Roehr, Film-Montagen I-III, 1965, 16mm film, 23 minutes
Peter Roehr, Ton-Montagen I-II, 1965, audiotape, 60 minutes

Roehr died at the age of 23 in 1968. From November 2009 to March 2010, his work is surveyed in parallel exhibitions at the Städel Museum and Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt which commemorate the 60th anniversary since his birth.

“I feel identical with what I do. In the ‘montages’ I realize, in an unrestricted manner, everything that is important to me. I believe, I am free.” (Peter Roehr, 1965)

Introduction by Mark Webber. Screening repeated Friday 9 July 2010 at Artists Space, New York. 

Underground New York

Date: 6 December 2009 | Season: Miscellaneous

Sunday 6 December 2009, at 7:30pm
New York Gershwin Hotel

In the 1960s, filmmakers investigated new forms of production in dialogue with radical shifts in art, music, performance and popular culture. Following the example of the Beats, the counterculture was alive with protest, freedom of expression and the breaking of taboos, and from the Film-Makers’ Coop to Andy Warhol’s Factory, portable 16mm cameras were bringing a whole new way of seeing to the cinema screen. These heady days of “underground film” were captured by Gideon Bachmann in a spirited broadcast for German television. Rarely seen today, it is one of the few surviving documents to show aspects of New York’s independent film culture during this exhilarating period.

Gideon Bachmann, 1967, black & white, sound, 51 minutes
Shirley Clarke grows carrots on top of the Chelsea Hotel and meets Jonas Mekas and Michelangelo Antonioni at the Film-Makers’ Distribution Center. Allen Ginsberg, Susan Sontag and Tuli Kupferberg protest for peace and are apparently shipped off to the Department of Correction. USCO freak out in their intermedia church and Maurice Amar stages a happening at the Movie Subscription Group. Gideon Bachmann goes on location with Adolfas Mekas in New Jersey, George Kuchar in the Bronx, and Carl Linder in his bedroom. Bruce Conner dances in a diner, and Andy Warhol fakes it for television.

Presented by Mark Webber, the Gershwin’s outgoing artist in residence, who is currently researching an oral history of avant-garde cinema from the 1950s through the 1970s. Some of those interviewed for the project will be present.


Date: 23 September 2010 | Season: Miscellaneous | Tags:

Thursday 23 September 2009, at 4pm
Zagreb 25FPS Festival

The two films in this programme depict two very different styles of food preparation, each of which is specific to its environment. Though formally quite similar, the circumstances of their making are distinctly varied. Food follows a day in the life of a communal restaurant in New York’s downtown art scene, whereas Le Cochon records the traditional slaughter of a pig in a remote French village. Both date from the early 1970s but while Matta-Clark’s film could almost be a contemporary report from any cosmopolitan city, Le Cochon documents a phenomenon of rural life that can rarely be experienced by outsiders.

Jean Eustache & Jean-Pierre Barjol, Le Cochon (The Pig), France, 1970, 50 min
Gordon Matta-Clark, Food, USA, 1973, 47 min

Curated by Mark Webber for 25FPS.


In Focus: Gregory Markopoulos

Date: 14 March 2011 | Season: Miscellaneous | Tags:

Tuesday 8 March 2011, at 7pm
Gent Cinema OFFoff

Gregory J. Markopoulos (1928-1992) groeide op in Toledo, Ohio, als kind van Griekse immigranten, maar keerde terug naar Griekenland in 1967. Na twintig jaar films maken in de Verenigde Staten besloot hij vanuit zijn idealistische visie op de artistieke en professionele onafhankelijkheid van de filmmaker en het kunstencircuit om zijn films samen te brengen in het Temenos Film Project. Daarin volgde hij zijn eigen koers in de ontsluiting van zijn oeuvre samen met zijn partner, de filmmaker Robert Beavers. OFFoff vertoont tijdens de maand maart drie programma’s gecompileerd door Temenos. Het eerste luik bevat de volgende kortfilms: Swain(1950), die eerst de titel Rain Black My Love droeg en waarin de regisseur zelf de protagonist is, Flowers of Asphalt (1951) die footage bevat uit iets vroeger werk, met name Jackdaw (1950) en Christmas USA (1949), de stille film Eldora (1953) en tot slot het beroemde Twice A Man (1963). Deze sensuele film, met muziek van Tchaikovsky, is gebaseerd op de mythe van de aseksuele Hippolytos, die ten val kwam met zijn paard door de grillen van jaloerse goden. Markopoulos beoogde een uitgepuurd evenwicht tussen narratie, montage, mise-en-scène, en geluid. Zijn consequente esthetisme en de psychodramatische geladenheid van zijn films maken dat hij een unieke status bekleedt binnen de geschiedenis van de Amerikaanse avant-garde.

Gregory Markopoulos, Swain, USA, 1950, 16mm, colour, sound, 24 min 
Gregory Markopoulos, Flowers of Asphalt, USA, 1951, 16mm, b/w, silent, 7 min
Gregory Markopoulos, Eldora, USA, 1953, 16mm, colour, silent, 8 min
Gregory Markopoulos, Twice a Man, USA, 1963, 16mm, colour, sound, 48 min

Deze screening wordt ingeleid door onafhankelijk filmcurator Mark Webber. Webber presenteert het oeuvre van Markopoulos wereldwijd. Op dit moment voltooit hij zijn boek Film as Film: The Collected Writings of Gregory J. Markopoulos dat volgend jaar zal verschijnen. Hij nam het curatorschap op zich van screenings en tentoonstellingen van onder meer Andy Warhol, Robert Beavers, Owen Land en de London Filmmakers Co-op en was gastcurator voor het BFI London Film Festival.

Met dank aan Robert Beavers (Temenos).

The Forgotten Films of Charles Ludlam

Date: 5 April 2011 | Season: Miscellaneous | Tags:

London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival 2011
Tuesday 5 April 2011, at 6:20pm
London BFI Southbank NFT2

These two re-discovered films by Charles Ludlam, legendary leader of the Ridiculous Theatrical Company, are affectionate gender-bending homages to the golden age of silent cinema. Contemporary with John Vaccaro and Jack Smith, Ludlam also broke the mould by bringing hysterical high camp, satire and melodramatic parody to the New York stage. Works-in-progress for over a decade, the films were left unfinished at the time of his death in 1987 and have now been digitally restored by his friends and admirers.

Charles Ludlam, USA, 1987, 80 min
with Everett Quinton, Minette, Arthur Kraft
Ludlam’s lover Everett Quinton plays a hapless creature who, having witnessed the abduction of the Gorilla Girl from a carnival freak show, is hoodwinked into white slavery and ravaged by King Kong. Failing to find her salvation in a convent, Dolores makes her fortune in a bordello before realising there’s no place like home.

Charles Ludlam, USA, 1987, 21 min
with Charles Ludlam, Everett Quinton, Debbie Pettie
This rarely seen treasure stars Charles Ludlam as an escaped prisoner who seeks refuge in an eerie Coney Island sideshow.

Gregory Markopoulos’ Gammelion

Date: 5 October 2011 | Season: Miscellaneous | Tags:

Wednesday 5 October 2011, at 7pm
Paris Centre Pompidou

Markopoulos’ portrait of the castle of Rocca Sinibalda (then owned by patron, publisher and activist Caresse Crosby) employs a complex system of fades to extend five minutes of footage to an hour of viewing time. The film, in which brief images appear amongst measures of black and clear frames, was a crucial step in an innovation of film form that culminated in the monumental ENIAIOS cycle (1948-90).

Gregory J. Markopoulos, Gammelion, USA, 1968, 16mm, colour, sound, 55 minutes.
Dedicated to Gregg Sharits. Music by Albert Roussel: excerpt from “Serenade”. Text excerpt from Rainer Maria Rilke’s “The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge”, read by Gregory Markopoulos. Filmed at Il Castello Roccasinibalda, Rieti, Italy.

The screening will be introduced by Mark Webber, an independent curator and editor of Film as Film: The Collected Writings of Gregory J. Markopoulos.

Jonas Mekas: Dancing with Fred Astaire

Date: 5 December 2017 | Season: Miscellaneous

Tuesday 5 December 2017, at 6pm

London BFI Southbank NFT1

Experimenta presents a book release, screening and Q&A with filmmaker Jonas Mekas

To celebrate the Anthology Editions release of his visual autobiography A Dance with Fred Astaire, Jonas Mekas will introduce the first screening of a new work: From the Notebooks of a Cinema Maniac (2017).

A filmmaker, critic, poet and activist with a career spanning 70 years, Mekas is widely considered one of the key figures of independent cinema and has collaborated with cultural icons such as Andy Warhol, John and Yoko, and Dalí. His films, which often document the small moments in life, are notable for their intensely personal nature. He’s also a co-founder of the Film-Makers’ Co-operative, Film Culture magazine, and Anthology Film Archives, the first museum devoted to film as an art form.

Jonas Mekas, From the Notebooks of a Cinema Maniac, 2017, 60 min

After the screening, Jonas Mekas will be in discussion with film curator Mark Webber, and will take part in a book signing.