The Forest Theater, 123 South Boundary St, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
PROGRAM 1: Light Leak
John Muse + Brendamaris Rodriguez RT: 08:04
Two artists, one in Pennsylvania and one in Puerto Rico, each in pandemic lockdown, each disoriented. Objects seem to control them; their bodies are unbalanced, unwieldy, comical. The horizon spins; the ground falls away; and yet a strange wonder reigns.
off (I don’t know when to stop)
Erica Sheu RT: 02:43
Day after day, bars of sunset pass the kitchen. Lamps carry on when the sky gets dark. The frame finds its balance. Life in work and work in life.
The Well-Prepared Citizen’s Solution
Lydia Moyer RT: 04:45
An account of life among those preparing for the end of the world. A report from the garden.
Stephanie Barber RT: 09:00
When I was twenty, I lived in Richard and his wife Mary’s apartment, the site of their voodoo spiritual temple in New Orleans. Of course, as priests and priestesses, Richard and Mary spoke often of death, transcendence, ethics and health. Our days were slow and filled with philosophical rumination. Richard a brilliant old man schooling a young wandering wonderer.
Wear and Tear
Jason Robinson RT: 07:58
Allostatic load – The cumulative burden of chronic stress and life events.
Zachary Epcar RT: 10:00
A portrait of the urban residential development as it slips into oblivion.
A Jurist for Nothing
Lana Caplan RT: 05:00
As the ringing alarm is consumed by static, fire haze hangs heavy on the California landscape of smashed cars, burning valleys, lost animals, and tented homes.
Nadeem Din-Gabisi RT: 13:27
As we follow The Seeker, who moves between the city and the sanctuary, MASS carves out the intimate communal spaces and intangible signals that characterize the contemporary Black experience.
Nate Dorr RT: 08:20
Isolated in a sealed apartment, a lone observer regards an outside world becoming increasingly unreal and unreachable. Connections fray. Time loses meaning. A science fictional essay film, or its inverse. A rumination on optics, memory, data, and endings. DISCLAIMER: Strobe Warning [mild-to-moderate strobing in some scenes]
Terror Has No Shape
Luis Arnias RT: 11:16
At night in Boston, a bodega cat is the only witness when an alien rock lands among the trees in an empty lot. Crude special effects conjure a viscous white humanoid who is stalked by a figure on a motorcycle. Their encounter ends in ritual fire. A burning effigy and a Senegalese call to prayer combine modes of Afro-Venezuelan spiritual resistance from past and future into an ambiguous present. Terror Has No Shape condenses the experience of colonialism into a series of fragments from first encounter to long haunted aftermath.
George Jenne RT: 05:57
A wannabe vampire spouts a hilarious and bizarre monologue as a means to cope with the uncertainty and chaos of the current day.
PROGRAM 2: In The Weeds
The Wind that Held Us Here
Jack Cronin RT: 06:25
During their annual migration to Mexico, thousands of Monarch butterflies funnel into Point Pelee National Park in Leamington, Ontario, where they wait for calm weather to allow them to fly across Lake Erie.
Tina Willgren RT: 04:15
A number of distorted 3D characters moving about in a scrap land. A collage of forms and functions, with textures and animations applied incorrectly. This material was obtained from public domain libraries, low budget game asset stores and preset banks. Mythological shapes show up in a haphazard and contextless way, mirroring the image flow of the internet era and the mental processes involved when making meaning of the world.
Misery Next Time
Rajee Samarasinghe RT: 04:58
This associative stream of visuals, culled from the past, reflect on the roles of art, labor, and journalism in contemporary Sri Lanka, facing a dubious future ahead. Memory and ethnographic deconstruction cascade in an obliterated form, forging a dire and prescient assemblage.
John Winn RT: 06:36
“All that which in Picture is not of the body or argument thereof is Landskip, Parergon, or By-work.”
-Thomas Blount, Glossographia (1656)
Sze Lin Pang RT: 13:06
We live in a world where looking and being looked at has become a kind of currency, where “likes” have literally become income. How can we locate or make space for the radical Other? In PHARMAKOSIS, a series of confrontations at a museum illustrates this exclusive economy of images and illuminates a complex set of permission structures surrounding who is allowed to look and who is not. An articulation of the Pharmakos – the figure in ancient greek religion who was ritually expelled from the polis in the belief that such sacrifice would bring about purification.
Kimberly Burleigh RT: 07:18
An elemental digital construction of the plantation house meticulously described in the seminal 1957 novel La Jalousie by French writer Robbe-Grillet. The compulsively observed settings and objects reveal the obsessive mindset of the main character, a jealous husband who suspects his wife of having an affair. The animation expands on the novel by making settings and objects dynamic; furniture self-constructs, objects move, and lights shift.
Pine and Genesee
Kelly Gallagher RT: 02:26
A short experimental documentary about the site of a former stop on the Underground Railroad, the erasure of history, and what we owe those who came and struggled before us.
We Cannot Love What We Do Not Know
Alexander Johnston and Kelly Sears RT: 03:26
A chilling phantasmagoric journey into the paranoid soulless soul of right wing historical propaganda, through an unflinching interrogation of the Trump Administration’s cynical, divisive, and factually incorrect 1776 Project.
The Truth About Hastings
Dan Schneidkraut RT: 09:33
Strange things are afoot in Hastings, Nebraska.
In the Weeds
Laura Asherman + Charles Watson RT: 10:52
Herpetologist Jeffrey Beane traverses the mysterious world of reptiles and amphibians out in the field and among rare collections. In the process of searching for clues, he reflects on the ongoing relationship between humanity and serpents.
Building an Edge
Brittany Gunderson RT: 04:10
Seeking out the edges of a landscape you’ve never been to, we keep finding ourselves at the center of something.
Notes from the Periphery
Tulapop Saenjaroen RT: 13:31
Mainly shot in the peripheral areas of the ever-expanding Laem Chabang port in Chon Buri, Thailand, An interrogation into the notion of territoriality, globalized networks, and ownership through fragmented relations of the affected sites and communities nearby. Shipping containers that become a policing tool, and the life cycle of a barnacle.
PROGRAM 3: Flowers Blooming in Our Throats
Lilli Carré RT 02:27
The animated body shifts in smear frames through the history of painting, parroting famous depictions of women. She tests the postures by inhabiting them and promptly discarding them, rejecting the fantasy that each represents. The cartoon body is confined by the frame but thrives in constant transition.
Flowers Blooming in our throats
Eva Giolo RT 08:37
Hands try to support or escape, but also to grip or strike, in a subtle interweaving of sounds and references that adds to the viewer’s sense of tension and unease. A dialogue of gestures, made up of repeated visual sequences where time is marked by the spinning of a small toy top, as unstable and precarious as the balance of a relationship.
Charlotte Taylor RT: 00:58
across the held breath distance that we keep in order to forget that we love.
Pretty is as Pretty Does
Jenny Stark RT: 06:45
Pretty Is As Pretty Does takes a gander at Southern “lifestyle culture” represented in books like Whiskey in a Teacup by Reese Witherspoon, Pinterest lists of Southern sayings, and Hollywood representations of the South. The film remembers matriarchal traditions, recipes, and expressions long after leaving home. It’s also about being charmed by kids with good manners, still hearing the relentless hum of cicadas even thousands of miles away, and missing the humid air, fireflies, and distant storms. Storms can be deadly, though, and sometimes politeness is an excuse to hide painful truths. Memory is just the road we’re lost on.
Lori Felker RT: 14:00
You never know when someone is miscarrying; it could be happening right next to you.
Caroline Key RT: 07:45
An incursion into Medicine, specifically gynecology, exposing problem origins and fraught desires.
The Ephemeral Orphanage
Lisa Barcy RT: 15:00
A group of tattered paper dolls daydream alternate realities and surreptitiously explore the hidden lives of their strict and secretive caregivers. Hijinks ensues and discoveries are made as the characters live out their childhood fantasies. Created with found paper dolls cut from a 1920s newspaper and found in an attic, the film explores the adult’s attempt to dictate what girls learn, and the children’s talent for discovering forbidden knowledge.
The Guy on the Bed
Mike Hoolboom RT: 03:50
News from another pandemic, the one that “changed everything” before it fell out of the news cycle and collective memory, except for the newly infected, or those who, like myself, managed a new life after death. Based on a text by David Wojnarowicz.
Vivian Ostrovsky RT: 12:46
Going through my mini DVs shot over the past decade, I rediscovered a forgotten night sequence of Chantal Akerman and Sonia Wieder-Atherton leaving a brasserie where we had dined together in Montparnasse. Since New York, Paris and Moscow were places the three of us had in common, I intertwined some of my images with hers.
History of Noise
Stella Rosen RT: 12:46
Though the world is full of noise, it was born in deep sea silence.
Stefano Miraglia RT: 14:10
An experimental music ensemble is recording an album. They want a very specific sound: the sound of thick air. The sound engineer struggles to understand and to find that sound. A tale of sleepless nights and loud music.
PROGRAM 4: Space is the Place
Space is the Place
Rupert Jörg RT: 06:03
A photographer tries to harmoniously combine a small child with symbols of state violence in one photo.
Seeing Spacecraft Earth
Lisa McCarty RT: 05:51
A pulsating cosmic montage; an alternative view of the seminal Earthrise photograph. We are all astronauts whether we like it or not.
Deborah Stratman RT: 04:33
Some forms we can only know by their shadow. In homage to the spirits of space test dogs, or any being we use in the name of progress.
Made by invitation of composer Olivia Block for the release of her album Innocent Passage in the Territorial Sea.
Of this Beguiling Membrane
Charlotte Pryce RT: 05:00
The story unfolds on the Eve of Midsummer: on the day when the threshold between worlds is porous, and an idle gesture can tempt fate. Inspired by Robert Kirk’s The Secret Commonwealth (1671), this work takes the outward form of a nature film. But observation gives way to illusion and the surface gives way to murky waters strewn with debris of those who have succumbed to its lures. (The Lady of Shalott, Ophelia). They remain trapped; menacing reminders of the dangerous seduction of beauty, and anger of the elusive spirits who resent being examined.
Georg Koszulinski RT: 12:00
A fictional account of David Koresh’s last words, a cursory analysis of the pantheon of Icelandic sagas, a home movie taking into account 20 years of filming on an old Bolex 16mm camera, a series of reflections on the destructive nature of industrialized societies: a collage film, metaphysical road trip movie in time of pandemic and social uprising. A point-and-shoot epistolary fever dream collage film made in times of multiple crises.
in ocula oculorum
Anna Kipervaser RT: 12:14
An interrogation of the unknown and the internal, in both subject matter and experience. Dealing with the contemporary state of perpetual doom, the film contemplates various stages of life and death from the point of view of our human bodies and perceptual systems. It explores beta movement and phi phenomenon, pushing the limits of intermittence and persistence of vision, playing with our innate desire for continuity and cohesion by forcing image slip.
Abinadi Meza RT: 05:35
This synthetic narrator remembers time through images. Real, fantasy or something in-between, the narrator describes finding patterns in time, which “she” calls time crystals. We do not know if this enigmatic film is a record, a signal, or a dream.
Stitching the Future with Clues
Allison Leigh Holt RT: 14:30
A neurodivergent-futurist manifesto considering feedback systems as philosophical frameworks, and a system of sense-making where there is no difference between art and science, and invocation.
To Live and Die in the Shadows: Meditations on Ferns, Survival, and Horizontal Gene Transfer
Shannon Silva RT: 05:29
180 million years ago, through a chance horizontal gene transfer, ferns acquired a much needed light sensor (neochrome) that allowed them to modify and survive in low light environments. We should all be so lucky.
If a Tree Falls in a Forest
Leonardo Pirondi RT: 15:00
SFollowing the discovery of a mysterious metal structure in the desert, this film documents the encased objects found within the structure. This film is made up of speculative recreations of the study conducted, analysis of the found objects, and surrounding landscapes.