2011 Distribution Grant for New York State Artists recipients announced

Dec 17, 2010 2:04 pm
The 2011 Distribution Grant for New York State Artists provides support for the distribution of new works in film, video, sound, new-media, and media-installation. Funding is available from free103point9 through a regrant from New York State Council on the Arts' Electronic Media and Film Program. Grant awards assist artists in making works available to public audiences. Successful grantees are also awarded the opportunity to work with a project mentor who will provide guidance as grantees execute their distribution and exhibition plans. The following eight projects were selected during a competitive panel review process:

2011 Grantees:

Sound, Installation: (alphabetical by artist)

Cathedral Scan, Blake Carrington

Cathedral Scan is an audiovisual performance and sound work that translates the architectural plans of Gothic cathedrals into open-ended scores. Through a custom Max/MSP/Jitter patch, laptop and MIDI controllers, the plans are sonified in a real-time performance. Rich organ-like harmonics and unique rhythmic signatures emerge from each graphic icon in a live scanning process.

Funding will support a CD release performance, and it’s documentation, at St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral in SoHo in March 2011, coinciding with the project’s album release by the Los Angeles-based label, Dragon’s Eye Recordings.

The Glass Sea, Jessica Feldman

The Glass Sea is a video and sound-based installation, which includes a brick-built projection room, sand, and handwritten texts detailing the schedules of inmates and patients confined on Rikers, Roosevelt, Randall's, and Wards Islands. The project is informed by interviews with current and past residents of these institutions, and a first-person narration of their schedules, experiences, and locations. Feldman simulated and documented the spaces, labors, and activities of island confinement described during the interviews during a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council residency on Governors Island, summer 2010.

Funding will support an installation of The Glass Sea in a New York public space near water, as well as a web-based documentation of the project.

Warsaw Machines & Songs, Nick Yulman

Created during a three-month artist residency at the Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski (CCA) in Warsaw, Poland, Warsaw Machines & Songs is a series of digitally controlled mechanical instruments using found materials from around Warsaw, and a composition cycle performed with the project’s instrumentation. For Warsaw Machines & Songs, Yulman employed Warsaw as both a source of physical material, scavenging parts from the streets to construct instruments, as well as a source for lyrical material.

Funding will support an eight-channel recording of the composition cycle and the release of the recordings on vinyl and CD.

Film, Video: (alphabetical by artist)

The Silent Truth, Joan Brooker-Marks

On a U.S. military base in Iraq, Army private, LaVena Lynn Johnson, is found dead, shot in the head. The Army rules it a suicide. Later, independent forensic evidence reveals that she was brutally murdered. To date, a hundred and fifty-nine women troops have died in Afghanistan or during Operation Iraqi Freedom since 2003. Of these deaths, twenty-nine have been classified as non-combat deaths by the military. Nine of those have been characterized as "suicides," and as in LaVena’s case and despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, the army refuses to re-open their cases. Joan Brooker-Marks's film The Silent Truth follows Dr. John and Mrs. Linda Johnson as they search for truth and justice for their daughter.

Funding will support a tour of the film to festivals around the country, as well as grass root screenings organized around and near U.S. military bases. Each screening will include a panel discussion.

The Griot, Volker Goetze

A Griot, in Western Africa is a repository of oral history and tradition shared through music and story. Volker Goetze’s documentary film, The Griot, explores a historic moment of change in this tradition, caught at present, between an imperative to maintain the social structures of the past and the need to enter into a dialogue with the international community. Kora virtuoso Ablaye Cissoko is a central figure in the film, and contributes to the project’s soundtrack.

Funding will be used towards promotional and marketing efforts, including preview DVDs, in support of the distribution of The Griot to a broad viewing audience.

My Perestroika, Robin Hessman

My Perestroika follows five ordinary Russians living in extraordinary times — from their sheltered Soviet childhood, to the collapse of the Soviet Union during their teenage years, to the constantly shifting political landscape of post-Soviet Russia. The film interweaves images of their contemporary world with rare home movie footage from the 1970s and 1980s in the USSR, along with official Soviet propaganda films that surrounded them at the time - together, painting a complex picture of the dreams and disillusionment of those raised behind the Iron Curtain.

Funding will support the film’s theatrical release at The IFC Center, New York City in March 2011, as well as promotion and marketing expenses associated with a subsequent theatrical run in advance of a POV broadcast in 2011.

Crosswalk, Jeanne Liotta

Crosswalk is an experimental non-fiction 35mm film. Constructed from documentation of Good Friday street processions in New York City’s Lower East Side neighborhood, the film’s image and soundscape exists at the intersection of home movies and Cinema Verité. With Crosswalk, Jeanne Liotta presents a locative portrait of her New York childhood, and explores the relationship between two omnipresent communities there: the church and the cops.

Funding will support the creation of film prints for distribution, as well as preview DVD packages.

Where Are You Taking Me, Kimi Takesue

A feature length documentary filmed in Uganda, Where Are You Taking Me reveals multifaceted portraits of Ugandans in both public and private spaces. The film travels through Uganda, roaming the vibrant streets of Kampala and the rural quiet of the North, to reveal a diverse society where global popular culture finds expression alongside enduring Ugandan traditions. Throughout the journey, Where Are You Taking Me asks us to consider the complex interplay between the observer and the observed, and challenges our notions of both the familiar and exotic.

Funding will support continued distribution of the film in both festivals and educational contexts. Funds will also support the authoring of a DVD and Educational Guide, that will allow individuals and institutions to use the film as both an artistic and educational teaching tool.

2011 Review Panelists:

Rebecca Cleman, Distribution Director, Electronic Arts Intermix (New York, NY)
Andrew Lampert, Artist; Archivist, Anthology Film Archives (New York, NY)
Thomas Lail, Artist; Founder, soundBarn; Associate Professor of Fine Arts, Department of Fine Arts, Theatre Arts & Broadcast Communications, Hudson Valley Community College, SUNY (Valatie, NY)

The 2011 Distribution Grant for New York State Artists is a regrant program made possible with public funds from the Electronic Media and Film Program of the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

More Information Contact:
Galen Joseph-Hunter
Executive Director
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