Ghost Stories – Thanks!

Thanks to everyone who came out for the second (but certainly not final) Art of Fear screening!

To say that I was incredibly  honored to show works by artists I admire so much would be an understatement. So thank you to all the artists who have been a part of this conversation-starter on horror and contemporary art: Takeshi Murata, Darren Banks, Jamie Shovlin, My Barbarian, Aida Ruilova, and Marnie Weber. Also to Nitehawk Cinema, who supports experimentation and all things horror as well as all those who spread the word and assisted putting all the files together (when they should have been working on other stuff). You did my first New York project proud.

More soon!

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Sinister Seven: Interview with Rue Morgue

It’s pretty darn exciting that The Art of Fear has initiated the conversation about horror film and contemporary art by visualizing some of the connections between the two. Realizing that there are three somewhat diverse components – cinema, horror, and art that all have the audience as a base commonality – there is obviously an interesting road ahead in discussing these influences with each community. This is one of the reasons why I was thrilled to answer some questions coming from the horror-realm by Rue Morgue (the other is that I think they do an intelligent take on horror). It talks a bit about the film program, other projects, and why myself and certain artists found an obsession with horror films.

I’ve included excerpt below but read the whole thing here:

For many of us, these exhibits are a very different way to approach the horror genre. Can you help me wrap my head around exactly what’s going on here?

The fact that The Art of Fear and other related projects are a different approach to horror is what interests me the most. I view the horror genre as evolving over time, through different cultural and political periods, absorbing the contemporary climate. Some elements to the genre stay while others change and I think that by including visual artists into the equation, we can start to see how pervasive and influential horror, particularly horror film, is on other mediums.

The Art of Fear: Ghost Stories on October 19

The second part of The Art of Fear artist film exhibition is this Wednesday (October 19) in the upstairs lobby at Nitehawk Cinema! The event is free and starts at 7pm with films beginning shortly after – the program will be shown twice. See  you all there!

Ghost Stories, the second program of The Art of Fear, features surreal tales of love, life, and death that are brought back from the afterlife in the bizarre and haunting works of My Barbarian (Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon and Alexandro Segade, Los Angeles), Aïda Ruilova (New York), and Marnie Weber (Los Angeles). Horror affect and narrative style are huge influencers in these films with inspiration deriving from Rod Serling’s Night Gallery television series, cult figures like Jean Rollin and Karen Black, and the theatrical monstrous characters from early Hollywood. Importantly, The Art of Fear is showing the New York debut of Marnie Weber’s most recent film, The Eternal Heart (2010).

PROGRAM
My Barbarian – Night Epi$ode: Curatorial Purgatorial (Pilot)
2009, Single channel video, 12 minutes, Color, Sound

Aïda Ruilova – Life Like
2006, Single channel video, 5 minutes, Color, Sound

Aïda Ruilova – Lulu
2007, Single channel video, 5 minutes, Color, Sound

My Barbarian – Night Epi$ode: Yoga Matt and Veronika Phoenix
2009, Single channel video, 13 minutes, Color, Sound

Aïda Ruilova – Meet the Eye
2009, Single channel video, 7 minutes, Color, Sound

Marnie Weber – The Eternal Heart (see trailer below)
2010, Shot on Super 8 and 16mm, digital projection, 28 minutes, Color, Sound

The Art of Fear: first program, Pieces

The Art of Fear begins in two days! To satiate your appetite in the meantime, here is the trailer to Jesus Rinzoli’s long forgotten slasher, Hiker Meat and the program for the first screening:

Horror cinema is ripe for the slaughter as Takeshi Murata (Chicago), Darren Banks (United Kingdom), and Jamie Shovlin (United Kingdom) cut, recompose, and manipulate scenes from classic horror films. These works are montages from classic (and not so classic) giallo, slasher, and B-movies from the 1960s-1980s. By re-arranging and manipulating the actions and contexts of films such as The BurningFriday the 13th, and Mask of Satan, these artists apply new meaning to what is familiar in horror. As the first program in The Art of FearPieces is an homage to and de-construction of this influential time period of horror.

PROGRAM

Takeshi Murata, Monster Movie
US, 2005, DVD, 3:55 minutes, Color, Sound

Darren Banks, I’m sure if there were a monster in the midlands we would have seen it on the telly
UK, 2011, Found video footage, 17 minutes, Color, Sound

Darren Banks, Interiors
UK, 2005, Found video footage, 10 minutes, Color, Sound

Takeshi Murata, Untitled (Silver)
US, 2006, DVD, 11 minutes, b&w, sound

Jamie Shovlin, Hiker Meat
UK, 2009-present, Digital Video, 77 minutes, Color Sound

Read previous GWKTM posts on Jamie Shovlin here and here | Darren Banks here and here.

The Art of Fear: artist films inspired by horror cinema

I’m so excited to announce The Art of Feara two-part artist film program I am curating at Nitehawk Cinema in Brooklyn. Featuring moving image works influenced by horror cinema, it is the first manifestation of my research on horror film and contemporary art presented in New York (look out for a major upcoming exhibition in Los Angeles) and I’mthrilled to be working with such truly incredible artists. Please come support artist film, cinema, and horror this October!

The two-part screening features works by Takeshi MurataDarren BanksJaime Shovlin (October 5) and My BarbarianAida RuilovaMarnie Weber (October 19).

View complete program and artist information here. 

The Art of Fear – an introduction

The Art of Fear is a writing series on horror cinema’s prolific usage of art as the focal point of fear.

I’m happy to announce the launch of a new writing feature on The Girl Who Knew Too Much called The Art of Fear. Titled in homage to Vincent Price’s BBC radio programme The Price of Fear and subsequent biography, The Art of Fear focuses on horror cinema’s prolific usage of art as the focal point of fear. Below is an introduction, in the very simplest of terms, to what I hope will become a lively, thought-provoking, and entertaining discussion on two of my favorite things: art and horror.

That horror films frequently feature artwork is not a startling revelation but this noticing this brought my individual obsessions with horror and art together, kick-starting my research on horror’s influence on contemporary artists. Now, by delving into arts role in horror I can further map out connections between the two. It also raises significant questions: Why is it that painting and sculpture can easily incorporate into horror narratives? What is it about art and artists that adapt so readily into the horrific? And since visual art and cinema are two different ways in which to tell a story, how can the collation of the two in the context of the horror genre, establish a more in-depth visual and narrative experience?

Here I’ll address these questions through a discussion of films such as Picture of Dorian Gray, House of Usher, Daughters of Satan as well as the television series Night Gallery in the terms of how artwork is used as the motivating force of horror. I’ll also be looking at how the conservation and preservation of art is an integral part of apocalyptic films like The Omega Man, I am Legend, and Children of Men. This ongoing process becomes more profound and fun with each new discovery I make and I hope it’ll be the same for you!

The plan is to publish an entry for The Art of Fear each week until the series concludes (if it ever does) but, of course, this may vary from time-to-time. First up will be… Albert Lewin’s Picture of Dorian Gray (1945).

Featured so far:

The Art of Fear: Picture of Dorian Gray
The Art of Fear: The Fall of the House of Usher

Image: Rod Serling introducing an episode of Night Gallery where the artwork told the story.