Experimental Response Cinema and the Austin Film Society are excited to present a program of film and video works by Peggy Ahwesh, one of the major figures of contemporary avant garde cinema, with Ahwesh in person to present the works.
Peggy Ahwesh has produced one of the most heterogeneous bodies of work in the field of experimental film and video. A true bricoleur, her tools include narrative and documentary styles, improvised performance and scripted dialogue, synch-sound film, found footage, digital animation, and crude Pixelvision video. Using this range of approaches, she has extended the project initiated by 1960s and ’70s American avant-garde film, and has augmented that tradition with an investigation of cultural identity and the role of the subject. Her work has screened internationally including a retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum, and her work was included in the 2002 Whitney Biennial.
Nocturne (film, 1998, 30 min)
A psychological horror film built on the conflicts of a woman tortured by the ambiguity between reality and illusion, dream and desire.
Neither Day Nor Night (video, 2015, 25 min)
A visual essay drawn from my experience of being embedded for some time in a place, a place that is both a beautiful ancient land and an abysmal war zone- the occupied territory of Palestine.Â The video quotes Toufic, Genet, Lovecraft and Tarkovsky, drawing parallels between the familiar tropes of the revenant, the undead and the disembodied with the lives of Palestinians… refugees, between worlds, yearning for theirr original soil, in limbo, lost in the labyrinth…
Lessons of War (video, 2014, 6 min)
Intrigued by a Taiwanese company that makes short animations to convey world news, I downloaded 50 or so of their Youtube offerings and re-edited them into episodes about the 2014 Israeli-Gaza war. The “cuteness effect” of the cartoon form, and the buffer it allows from reality, makes for economical and stress-free viewing. We get the information in an abstract and simplified form, easy to convey the narrative of war with a post-image sensitivity to the viewer.