The Pleasure Garden: A Very Queer Historical Introduction to the Art of Film
Back in the 1960s, when flowers had power, and you saved water by showering with a friend, and if it felt good, you did it, queer artists introduced experimental film to sights and sounds that had seldom been seen on the screen—or in respectable society. Before the Age of Aquarius ran headlong into the Age of Reagan, they had transformed filmmaking practice and subject matter, and helped redefine art, for commercial cinema as much as for museums and galleries. We’ll look at numerous excerpts to consider why experimentalism was so queer—and why queer filmmakers were so experimental.
Part 2 Confessions July 5
Many filmmakers use the camera to “tell their truth.” Curt McDowell, James Broughton, Fred Halsted, and Mike and George Kuchar were among those who took a good, sometimes hard look at themselves, letting the whole world watch.
(Part 1, Flaming Creatures, takes place on June 14. Register here: https://withfriends.co/event/4625140/ )
Bernard Welt is Professor Emeritus at the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design at The George Washington University (Washington DC), where he taught courses in the history of cinema, film theory, and the evolution of representations of sex in American cinema. He is the author of Mythomania: Fables, Fantasies, and Sheer Lies in American Popular Art and of essays on film, books, theater, and visual art in many journals and magazines, and serves as the Vice Editor of Straight to Hell: The Manhattan Review of Unnatural Acts. He has received a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Writing and a Lambda Literary Award nomination.
A Co-Production of Rhizome DC and Home School at Revolve: http://www.revolveavl.org/home-school
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