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Current projection trends

Films seen from the perspective of a projection specialist!

Projection specialist John Blouin will be presenting, during a double programme of films, the current trends in various forms of projection as well as the precise and unique roles that they play in cinematographic practices. Come witness the unravelling of the history of cinema, from silent to 3D and from film to digital! Certain films will literally showcase projectionists in starring fiction or documentary roles, while others use projection as their central visual element with scratched filmed, projected shadows or effects of contrasting lightness and darkness. Animated movies, experimental movies, movie music, very rare movies and just plain movies, will all be projected using either film or digital formats.

 

You are invited to celebrate the cinematographic spectacle!

Event program

March 30th, 2012, 7:00pm
Les joies innocentes de la projection

Les joies innocentes de la projection

Donald Peters, Canada, 1950, 20 minutes, DVD

In this enthusiastic and funny documentary from the National Film Board of Canada, filmmaker Donald Peters showcases the thousand and one joys and difficulties of the profession of projectionist at the dawn of the 1950’s.  

The Film of Her

The Film of Her

Bill Morrison, United States, 1996, 12 minutes, Data

Morrison came on the scene in the 1990’s and he is one of the American filmmakers who most considered how the passing of time affects film as well as the consequences that this may have on a viewer’s experience during a projection. In “The Film of Her”, the organic quality of images that have been altered by time allows for a touching tribute to aging, to the fragility of life and tothe  disappearance of a loved one. With music by Henryk Gorecki and Bill Frisell. 

Salim Baba

Salim Baba

Tim Sternberg, United States, 2007, 15 minutes, Digibeta

The role of today’s projectionist differs depending on the geographic setting in which he practices. In this colourful portrait that was made rather recently, we discover the work of the travelling projectionist who recuperates sections of film, a profession that is rather common in contemporary India. Salim Baba is a craftsman in the proper sense of the word and he turns projections held in the most surprising and unusual contexts into spaces for creation. 

Selected at the Tribeca (New York) and Sundance festivals as well as at the Festival du Nouveau Cinéma (Montreal). 

The Revenge of the Kinematograph Cameraman

The Revenge of the Kinematograph Cameraman

Ladislaw Starevich, Russia, 1912, 14 minutes, 16mm. Silent

At the beginning of the 1910’s, the first fiction films that gave projection in cinema an important role in the development of the story’s action appeared. This Starevich film remains without a doubt the most staggering example of this narrative process. In it, one of the inventors of stop-motion cinema tells the story of a love triangle between three insects. The projection will make one of the adulterous insects sing!

Une nuit sur le Mont Chauve

Une nuit sur le Mont Chauve

Alexandre Alexieff and Claire Parker, France, 1933, 8 minutes, 35mm. Photo credit: Cinedoc

Alexander Alexieff and Claire Parker created the pin screen at the beginning of the 1930’s. Thousands of pins were attached to a screen and the technique consisted of moving them in order to create images that would be filmed one at a time, creating an illusion of movement that could illustrate a story. This film changed peoples’ perspectives on the subject of projection because the pin screen reproduces its effects and allows us to better understand the expressive force of this technique that allows cinema to exist. 

Celestial Subway Lines/Salvaging Noise (

Celestial Subway Lines/Salvaging Noise (

Ken Jacobs, with John Zorn et Ikue Mori, United States, 2004, 12 minutes, DVD

American experimental filmmaker Kenneth Jacobs is a projection specialist, raising it to the rank of performance. This film marvellously shows his way of doing things. It was filmed during an exceptional evening at the Anthology Film Archives in New York.  For the occasion, Jacobs sought the complicity of two major avant-garde musicians: John Zorn and Ikue Mori.

The Heart of the World

The Heart of the World

Guy Maddin, Canada, 2000, 6 minutes, 35mm

The mad genius filmmaker from Winnipeg was commissioned to make this film by the Toronto International Film Festival. In it, he intensifies one of the characteristics of his work, extending the reach and methods of silent cinema. The viewing experience is completely influenced by the interplay of light created by the projection, as the sheer speed of the shots (up to two per second) creates flashes and streaks. 

March 30th, 2012, 9:00pm
Erreur tragique

Erreur tragique

Louis Feuillade, France, 1912, 24 minutes, Silent DVD

Louis Feuillade is a prolific director who was accredited by the Gaumont society at the beginning of the 1910s. The surrealists adored him and he directed exceptional films that looked at hypocrisy and adultery. In “Erreur tragique”, projection is used as a fantastical screen that feeds the protagonist’s paranoia: he believes to have seen his girlfriend appear in a shot with another man, so he buys a copy of the film from the studio in order to identify her lover. 

De l'origine du xxie siècle

De l'origine du xxie siècle

Jean-Luc Godard, France-Switzerland, 2000, 20 minutes, DVD

Since the 1980s, Jean-Luc Goddard has been developing a technique for kinescope editing, which implies the reusing of film images transferred onto video to create an original work that is also a tribute to his experience a moviegoer. “De l’origine du XXIe siècle” is a montage of films from Goddard’s memory, films that he had seen in theaters since the time of his youth. It is a poetic work that is accompanied by the voice of writer Pierre Guyotat and in it, Godard tries to find, within cinema’s past, the beginning and the projection, in the metaphorical sense of the word, of our contemporary world. 

Pure Beauté (Monsavon)

Pure Beauté (Monsavon)

Alexandre Alexieff, France, 1955, 2 minutes, DVD, Photo credit: Cinedoc

Throughout his career, Alexieff directed a considerable number of advertising films that gave him the opportunity to experiment and have fun with different forms. In this short film, he represents the confrontation between projection light and sensual attraction, all the while accentuating his model’s skin. 

Cendrillon

Cendrillon

Lotte Reiniger, Germany, 1922, 13 minutes, Silent DVD

Projection is the result of a balance between shadow and light. Using this obvious fact as a starting point, pioneer German filmmaker Lotte Reniger invented a delicate form of animation that is created entirely with cut out paper. With his unique silhouettes he gives due credit to the ancient art of Chinese shadows. 

Rectangle et rectangles

Rectangle et rectangles

René Jodoin, Canada, 1984, 8 minutes, 35 mm

Quebecois filmmaker René Jodoin was, in the 1980’s, one of the first heroes of digital filmmaking. This brilliant and experimental work still resembles plastic science fiction to this day. “Rectangle et rectangles” uses the screen, or the projection’s frame, as its focal point. Thus, the beam of light that transmits digital information modifies our perception of the movie’s image. 

Around is around

Around is around

Norman Mclaren and Evelyn Lambart, Canada/UK, 1951, 10 min. Digibeta

In the early 1950s, Norman McLaren developed an interest in 3D images and created two stereoscopic film projects in partnership with the National Film Board of Canada and the British Film Institute. “Around is Around” uses the space of screen that is covered by the projection to create circles, lines and the movement of points. Its audacity is still staggering to this day. 

Adieu bipède

Adieu bipède

Pierre Hébert, Canada, 1987, 15 minutes, 35 mm

Inspired by the literary, visionary and graphic poetry of Henri Michaux, this film is one of Pierre Hébert’s most beautiful. It is a sort of synthesis of his work. Using the act of writing, which resembles the scratching on film that the director is fond of, the visual effects created by the  movement of the film and live action shots, “Adieu Bipède” looks at the distinct conception of the performance of projection in cinema. 

Coming soon

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