FILM CLUB: “Independent Frames”, with Herb Shellenberger (22 Mar)

The last edition of this series of FILM CLUB, "Independent Frames" examines the work of American artists who approached film through independently-produced, frame-by-frame animations in the 1970s and 1980s.

Made primarily by artists with no formal animation training, the films in this selection demonstrate the wide variety of psychedelic, formalist, autobiographical and counter-cultural work produced during this period, and the individualised techniques they inherited and refined from older generations of experimental animators. The films show a diversity of practice but demonstrate each artist’s concentration on the construction of these works on a frame-by-frame basis. Each film is a potent concentration of images, sounds, movement and ideas.

Ayoka Chenzira’s Hair Piece explores the filmmaker's identity through a hilarious examination of beauty standards for black women and men, whereas Lisa Crafts’ Glass Gardens captures a more poetic, introspective scene of a woman in a gritty urban dystopia. Fred Mogubgub’s rock’n’roll-filled The Pop Show is a pre-1970s anticipation of the energetic and inventive experiments new artists brought to animation during the following decades. Sally Cruikshank’s films, shown here in new 35mm restorations held at the BFI National Archive, filter classic cartoons through a countercultural lens, resulting in a fantasy-filled mixture of the 1930s, 1970s and the distant future.

Film to be shown include:

  • George Griffin, Trikfilm3, USA 1973, digital, colour, sound, 4 min 
  • Fred Mogubgub, The Pop Show, USA 1966, digital, colour, sound, 7 min 
  • Ayoka Chenzira, Hair Piece: A Film for Nappy-Headed People, USA 1985, digital, colour, sound, 10 min 
  • Lisa Crafts, Desire Pie, USA 1976, digital, colour, sound, 5 min 
  • Maureen Selwood, Odalisque, USA 1980, digital file, colour, sound, 12 min 
  • Lisa Crafts, Glass Gardens, USA 1983, digital, b/w, sound, 5 min 
  • George Griffin, New Fangled, USA 1990, digital, colour, sound, 2 min 
  • Sally Cruikshank, Make Me Psychic, USA 1978, 35mm, colour, sound, 8 min 
  • Sally Cruikshank, Quasi at the Quackadero, USA 1975, 35mm, colour, sound, 10 min 
  • Al Jarnow, Celestial Navigation, USA 1985, digital, colour, sound, 14 min 

The screening will be followed by an ‘in conversation’ and Q&A with event curator Herb Shellenberger and Peter Taylor, Director, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival.

When: Wednesday 22 March, 8.30 – c.10.30pm

Where: Tyneside Cinema (Roxy, 3rd floor), 10 Pilgrim Street, Newcasrtle Upon Tyne, NE1 6QG

To register please click here. Registration closes at 2pm on the day of the event. Thanks to the support of NFM’s funders there is no charge to attend, but places are strictly limited and offered first come first served. You may register for up to two places but must specify the name and details of each guest individually for the registration to be valid.

Herb Shellenberger is also offering a limited number of one-to-one advisory meetings for artists with moving image as part of their practice. These will take place in Newcastle on Tuesday 21 March. The dealdine for applications is midday on 16 March. For more information about how to apply please click here.


About Herb Shellenberger

Herb Shellenberger is a curator, writer and producer working between London and Philadelphia. He is a graduate of the Central Saint Martins/LUX MRes Moving Image programme and has curated screenings at institutions such as Arnolfini, International House Philadelphia, Light Industry, LUX and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. His writing has appeared in Art-Agenda, The Brooklyn Rail, LUX Moving Image Blog and the anthology Free to Love: The Cinema of the Sexual Revolution. He is curator of the series ‘Independent Frames: American Experimental Animation in the 1970s + 1980s’ which debuted at Tate Modern and the Irish Film Institute in February 2017.


If you would like to find out more about NFM’s FILM CLUB programme click here.


Image credit: Maureen Selwood, Odalisque, USA 1980



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