First-Person in a Globalized World—Irina Leinmacher

Supported in part by the Oregon Council for the Humanities and the Regional Arts & Culture Council

Apr. 13 + 14 - 7:30 pm
$6 Suggested Donation
New American Art Union
922 SE Ankeny St

About This Screening

For the final installment in our Critical Cinemas series, we are excited to have Irina Leimbacher, Artistsic Director of the San Francisco Cinematheque, in Portland to present a two-part program of first person essay films and videos. How does globalization affect the very idea and articulation of self? How can the spatial, temporal, and rhetorical elasticity of film language be used to give form to complex, multi-layered performances of the first-person? These two screenings explore a gamut of approaches to and experiences of self, starting with Kidlat Tahimik’s now classic feature-length essay Perfumed Nightmare and continuing with six short films by multi-cultural and diasporic filmmakers. Exuberant, witty, and politically astute, Perfumed Nightmare moves from Tahimik’s childhood village, where Voice of America, movies and space travel transform his lively imagination, to Paris and Bavaria where he tastes some of the fruits of capitalism alongside an American bubble gum entrepreneur. For Susan Sontag, writing when the film first came out, it "reminds one that invention, insolence, enchantment—even innocence—are still available on film." In the program of shorts, Michelle Dizon’s My Child (Anak), Anita Chang’s Mommy, What’s Wrong?, Shashwati Talukdar’s My Life as a Poster and Nguyen Tan Hoang’s PIRATED! all explore narratives of displacement and trauma, but from wildly different perspectives and voices. In each case, the narrating self and the narrative itself are de-stabilized, but while two of the pieces remain anchored in movies of ‘home’ and familial relation, the other two project fantasies—theirs, ours, and others’—till we are mired in their complex cultural mirroring. Finally, Tran T. Kim-Trang’s Operculum and Dizon’s Calibrate examine notions of norms and normativity, the former with regard to hegemonic ideas of beauty and sanity, and the latter with regard to race and capitalism. —Irina Leimbacher

Program Details

April 13
  • Perfumed Nightmare
    by Kidlat Tahimik
    Philippines, 1978, 16mm, b&w, 91 min.
April 14
    by Nguyen Tan Hoang
    2000, video, color, sound, 11 min.
  • My Child (Anak)
    by Michelle Dizon
    2001, video, color, sound, 27 min.
  • Calibrate
    by Michelle Dizon
    2004, video, color, sound, 8 min.
  • My Life as a Poster
    by Shashwati Talukdar
    1996, video, color, sound, 7 min.
  • Operculum
    by Tran T. Kim-Trang
    1993, video, 14 min.
  • Mommy, What's Wrong?
    by Anita Chang
    1997, 16mm, 13 min.

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