A couple of months before her untimely death last year Millie Niss
sent me this video –
‘I have been working for a long time on and off (mostly off) these
days on a video showing industrial ruins on the outskirts of Buffalo,
shot from an elevated highway which is scheduled to be torn down…’
I remember thinking how beautiful and evocative it was and I assumed
Millie would publish it on the Sporkworld Blog in due course.
Sadly this never happened.
The other day I came across it & asked Millie’s mother and collaborator,
Martha Deed, for permission to post it here, which she gave,
so it’s a pleasure tinged with sadness to do so.
We’re going to take a summer break now.
We’ll be back on September 20th but in the meantime we’ll leave you
with this memorial to a fine artist & a fine human being.
On the ever splendid Netbehaviour list there are all sorts of
interesting shenanigans as Karen Blisset, a fairly long time
contributor, offers to give her e mail log in to anyone who asks for it
in order to allow them to “be” her.
One of the interesting things about it is I’m not sure how
many people have actually taken up the offer ( and, of course, there’s
no way of telling)
(Go and join Netbehaviour to get the full works, it’s a warm and
welcoming place but one, nonetheless, with a tradition of robust
and interesting debate)
Anyway, one of this set of Karens contacts us
with a movie called ‘The Idea of Karen Blisset’.
I for one expected something quite fierce & in your
face but instead there’s this rather delicate & gentle &
Interesting to see how it all unfolds…
PS 25th July
Since we posted this, another movie from ‘Karen Blisset’ appeared on the list:
The first section of this piece by Jacky Sawatzky, in the library,
is one of my favourite dance video moments ever,
but the whole thing buzzes with life & ideas &
there’s a winning willingness to take risks & lack of
cynicism to it all too.
Steven Ball has re-started his Direct Language project & this was the first piece
of the new sequence.
I think it is quite breathtaking.
It strikes me as very much in a relatively recent British experimental film tradition
where a quite austere formalism can engender the most extraordinary beauty.
There’s always the danger of a failure of nerve, the pill being quite needlessly sugared
and nothing such happens here.
Not only is it haunting & lovely, there’s food for thought here too,
the lack of glibness & the refusal to cuddle up to the viewer meaning
it sustains repeated viewing.
One of those does-what-it-says-on-the-can movies.
Made by Mike Stoddard & Ryan Lynch who say:
”This is our latest creation made from free bikes and parts,
comprised of three womens’ frames, bed frame iron (front fork),
and an old ATV shock.
Filmed on the Woonsocket River Bikeway in Rhode Island. ‘
…not much to add except to say it’s very diverting & WANT ONE!