Spectral Evidence
November 6, 2012 (Tue) - 8:00pm, Brattle Theatre

Because this screening falls on the very ominous election night, we have decided to explore a subject that has received a lot of attention in the past year: the female body.

The sentiments expressed by ideologues such as Paul Ryan, Rush Limbaugh, Todd Akin, Michele Bachmann bear some resemblance to those evoked during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692-93 and the European witch hunts, which had raged about a century before. At these trials, spectral evidence was an effective form of court testimony, in which the accuser recalled dreams or visions implicating a community member in witchcraft.

In a political climate where the female body is examined for its childbearing properties and where feminine autonomy is suspicious, artistic creativity by female artists may be seen as a kind of witchcraft. And so we present you "spectral evidence" against these artists: four films that rival the male gaze of contemporary American cinema by taking a new look at the trappings of the female body.

Program

Hay Algo y Se Va by Kim Arnias

2012, 2:53, 16mm - world premiere!
(There is something. Now it's gone.) A perpetual sea of bodies, gestures and gazes collide to create a familiar yet estranging family reunion.

Heritage by Cate Giordano

2012, 30:23, video - Boston premiere!
Shot by Patrick Guerrero. With Julianna Schley.
It is 1888 and all the buffalo are gone, leaving one of the largest cities in South Dakota empty. Now there are only two residents left. Shot 'on location' in the streets of New York City, Heritage is a melodrama about a man, played by a woman, who learns to deal with the reality of change and the freedom of being alone.

Gold Party by Nellie Kluz

2012, 20 min, video - Boston premiere!
Gold is a commodity that thrives in uncertain economic climates, and rising gold prices over the past few years have created a boom industry around precious metal scrap. Watching gold scrap dealers at work, this documentary provides a window into one small corner of a global economic market.

and

Cosmetic Emergency by Martha Colburn

2005, 8 min, 35mm
Cosmetic Emergency explores the idea of beauty through a collage of live action and lyrical animations. A free-form take on the current trend of cosmetic obsession and the immortal quality of painting, the film searches for "what’s on the inside."