Once again our annual round-up of some of the best artists’ moving image books and DVDs published this year (in English), and please let us know what you think we’ve missed.
The Complete Works of Joyce Wieland: 1963-1986. Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre (CFMDC) and Cinémathèque Québécoise’s amazing five disc DVD boxset collecting all of this major Canadian artist filmmaker’s work including her two feature films. Watch out for a related Wieland retrospective at Tate Modern this coming January co-presented wit CFMDC and LUX.
American Dreams (Lost and Found) and Landscape Suicide by James Benning. Another great release by Editions Filmmuseum, the first Benning films on DVD! which collects two of his truly great (and until now very hard-to-see) early works.
John Smith DVD Boxset. Obviously we are a little biased but I am sure many would agree that the long-awaited box-set of British filmmaker John Smith is one of the publications of the year. This 3-disc set collects all of his key works produced between 1975 - 2007 over 3 discs. Other great LUX DVD releases this year included Jo Ann Kaplan, Body of Work (including her acclaimed Maya Deren documentary, Invocation), Sarah Pucill, Selected Films 1990 - 2010 and the first in our new limited release series, Peter Gidal, A Performance of Sorts with Brecht.
Is This What You Were Born For?, Abigail Child. Bi-lingual French and English DVD and book from MētisPresses collecting American avant-garde filmmaker Abigail Child’s major film series Is This What You Were Born For? along with essays on the films and text/poems drawn from the film soundtracks.
IN/FLUX Mediatrips from the African World. French DVD label Lowave continue their impressive series of releases collecting work from underrepresented parts of the world with this DVD produced in collaboration with SPARCK in Cape Town collects experimental films and videos from Africa including Neil Beloufa's brilliant 2007 film Kempinski.
This Our Still Life, Andrew Kötting. Beautifully produced limited edition book and DVD release of Kötting’s critically acclaimed new feature film accompanied by a book of drawings by his daughter Eden and a new essay by Iain Sinclair
Expanded Cinema: Art, Performance and Film, Edited by A.L.Rees, David Curtis, Duncan White, Steven Ball. Book published in UK by Tate Publishing. One of the books of the year, this handsomely designed book (by Sara de Bondt Studio) brings together new and historical texts in a major new study of expanded cinema.
Optic Antics: The Cinema of Ken Jacobs, edited by Michele Pierson, David E. James and Paul Arthur, published by Oxford University Press. Another book of the year this an amazingly comprehensive and entertaining monograph on the influential US filmmaker, would be great to see more filmmakers getting this treatment, and even includes Ken in a comic strip by Art Spiegelman!
Poor Man's Expression,Technology, Experimental Film, Conceptual Art, edited by Martin Ebner and Florian Zeyfang. Bi-ligual book published in Germany by Sternberg Press. Substantial book exploring reciprocal influences between conceptual art and experimental film which includes an essay by our own Ian White.
Screen/space: The Projected Image in Contemporary Art (Rethinking Art's Histories), edited by Tamara Trodd. Published by Manchester University Press. Interesting academic publication focused around the proposition of 'projected art' as a distinct field of practice from other avant-garde film traditions, a particular highlight is an essay by Maxa Zoller on ‘Museum’ and ‘festival’ in modernist histories of film.
This Is All Film! Experimental Film in Yugoslavia 1951-1991, published by Museum of Modern Art Ljubljana. Produced as part of a major exhibition this useful publication explores (in English) the until now inaccessible history of experimental film in the former Yugoslavia.
8 Metaphors (because the moving image is not a book), By Luke Fowler, Laura Gannon, Duncan Marquiss, Laure Prouvost, Grace Schwindt, Sam Stevens, Stina Wirfelt and Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa. Published by LUX. Produced as part of the LUX Associate Artists programme this unique book explores the artists’ practice through a series of metaphors for making moving image work and meaning.
Born in Flames, edited and designed by Kaisa Lassinaro, published by Occassional Papers. An amazing illustrated photo-strip transcript of Lizzie Borden’s 1983 feminist sci-fi film Born in Flames, more films should get this treatment!