This fantastic documentary profiles the avant-garde Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929), a polka-dot-loving eminence recognized throughout the international art world. Kusama is one of the most influential and most collected artists of the 1960s; this film follows her creative process in her later years, working on a massive solo exhibition. At once an endearing and an intimidating character, Kusama has been widely quoted as saying “If I didn’t make art, I’d probably be dead by now.” As each work comes to completion, we witness the essence of Kusama’s art welling up in the conflict between life, death, and love. Opening the show will be multi-instrumentalist & songwriter Karima Walker who will be channeling Kusama’s ecstatic energies into a minimalist folk-scape of image and sound.
(Photographer Eric Kroll in person)
An inventor of video art and media sculpture The Korean-American artist, Nam June Paik (1932–2006) was for a period of time in NYC, a friend and mentor to (presently Tucson-based) renowned artist / photographer, Eric Kroll.
Writes Kroll, “When I was a young man in Manhattan taking photographs of anything that moved, for myself and for anyone that would publish the images, I accidently intersected with Nam June Paik. He changed how I did what I did in photography by showing me aka teaching me, the importance of including absurdity in my work. I shot for him, worked with him, from the mid-seventies to when I moved to San Francisco in 1994. That experience unlocked the door to everything I try to do.”
This evening is a truly rare one night gallery installation of Kroll’s intimate photos of Paik in addition to original drawings, seriagraphs and sculpture. With improvised noise from electronic keyboards, The Dos Jorgs will preface and footnote a never-before-seen screening of Kroll’s video documentation of Paik at work creating an iconic video sculpture. Plus, single-channel Paik works from the EV archive.
LAVISH LITERARY HOAXES
EV is proud to present the Tucson premiere of Marjorie Sturm’s new feature documentary about the scandalous writer JT LeRoy. JT LeRoy was a teen prostitute, addicted to heroin and infected with HIV, when a therapist encouraged him to write his life story. Buoyed by a cadre of celebrities, he published three critically acclaimed books, including Sarah and The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things. But as his fame skyrocketed, the shocking truth emerged: JT was not what he seemed. What followed was a downfall as bewildering as it was tragic. Drawn into LeRoy’s inner circle before the truth came to light, filmmaker Marjorie Sturm was misled like many others. Through intimate interviews with many close to the tarnished figure, Sturm attempts to untangle what really happened, and in the process explores how his deception called into question not only the value of LeRoy’s writing without his “authenticity”, but our culture’s complicity with the author’s seductive cult of personality.
(Filmmaker in person)
Join us in welcoming back the esteemed film/Installation artist and Tucson native, Lucy Raven. We loved her deep thinking feature Chinatown screening in 2013 and wanted to catch up with what projects she is currently working on. Tonight’s program will consist of a selection of works/fragments from Raven and/or a curated selection of amazing experimental film and video art from the EV archive. We guarantee a unique viewing experience and an engaging conversation with Raven about art/aesthetics/process and what it means to be a media artist in this day and age! Don’t miss this one!!
After an epic run of over 30 years of experimental, agitprop and activist film & video, Other Cinema has just narrowly avoided being given the gentrifying jack-boot from their storefront on Valencia Street in San Francisco’s Mission district (& miraculously signed a new 5 year lease!!) . Other Cinema is the passionate curatorial project of the genius found-footage essayist/provocateur filmmaker Craig Baldwin. With a sphere of creative influence that has extended across the world through his bricolage of DIY media forms and radical politics that have been the hallmark of OC’s amazing run of community-based media exhibition. Tonight at EV we will pay tribute to the internationally inspirational Other Cinema through the screening of Baldwin’s masterpiece Tribulation 99 and works by OC luminary such as Greta Snider, Vanessa Renwick, Gibbs Chapman, Kerry Laitala, Bryan Boyce & more. Plus we hope to bring our EV audience a live video feed direct from the last OC show happening simultaneously in SF!
(Filmmaker in person)
Tonight’s program gathers a collection of works by the extraordinary Tucson video artist Nika Kaiser who has been busy sculpting the ethos of T-Town image/sound through her recent videos with Human Behavior, Gabriel Sullivan, Burning Palms & Prom Body. Come view a weaving together of Kaiser’s new works with a selection of artists films that link landscape, movement and technology to the supernatural human experience. Featuring Kaiser’s own films (including some Tucson premiers) + works by Innaritu and the LA Dance Project, video pioneer Joan Jonas and more!
1970’s Gay Desert Eros!
(Filmmaker & actors in person)
I, Scorpio is a homo-erotic experimental narrative, set in the mid 1970’s, about a drug dealer who picks up a Mexican hitchhiker on a desert road in Arizona. Filmed and cast in Tucson, the dreamy, hypnotic I, Scorpio is the latest sun and sex-drenched film by writer-director Patrick McGuinn. Set in 1974, this film stars Coleman Kent, as Beau, the American who picks up Jesus, Christian Isaac Cruz; they drive off into the desert, do some drugs and later hole up in a motel to have sex. McGuinn uses this minimal premise as a means to explore a spiritual intersection of cinematic experimentation and the landscapes of desire. McGuinn will open the show with a selection of music and film shorts.
Outrageous AIDS Activism!
(Co-sponsored by “Dis-Orienting AIDS Discourse”, a symposium hosted by the UA Institute for LGBT Studies)
Stephen Winter’s audacious 1996 feature debut, “Chocolate Babies,” is a period satire about a bunch of HIV-positive Asian and black drag queens who decide to take matters in hand and fight the government’s apathy toward AIDS. Winter, a young African-American director, has constructed an outrageous tale, set in a harsh underworld populated by ethnic minority members infected with the virus. Aware of, but unwilling to accept passively their status as queer outcasts, the protagonists form a terrorist gang dedicated to the agenda of attacking conservative and homophobic politicians. Join us at Exploded view for a riotous & powerful evening celebrating a great time capsule of queer poetic terrorism!
We at EV know that Herzog’s masterful vampire tale starring Klaus Kinski as the emulsion-faced undead parasite is the best vampire film ever! This homage to FW Murnau’s 1922 film is conceived and executed with passionate connoisseurship; Herzog keeps some original locations and images, and approximates the operatic visual language of Murnau with a new kind of primitivism: strange tableaux, eerie wordless scenes, and juxtaposed, grainy images of bats that directly reference silent moviemaking. Kinski carries it all off with glassy-eyed fervor and fathomless agony, as his Count prepares to carry his anti-enlightenment into the heart of 19th-century Germany. Kinski really is scary!
Aleksei Guerman’s Hard to be a God (FREE )
The late Russian director Aleksei Guerman’s last film is a grandly arbitrary carnival of neo-medieval depravity. It’s also a mudpunk allegory of Russian barbarism and backwardness. The action of this sci-fi film is set on a planet parallel to earth that knew no Renaissance (let alone an Enlightenment) and keeps its inhabitants, with their modern-day consciousness and vernacular, trapped in the low-tech crudeness and amoral violence of the Middle Ages. Monstrous visions appear with an obsessive attention to detail; with a glistening black-and-white palette, the director smears the screen with mud, blood, and excrement! (Mature Content)