First things first: it’s been too long! I recently made the move to New York City, where I’ll be for the foreseeable future. It’s been a hectic but fun last few weeks, and I’m very excited for what’s ahead. I have many students to interview, emails to return, and screenings and readings to catch up on. Thank you for your patience!
I’ve been working on a short essay that I will share next week, but in the meantime, here’s a short summary of the things I’ve been working on over the past month:
Episode 26. The Scholarly Video Essay — The Video Essay Podcast
The most recent episode of the podcast features a conversation with Dr. Tracy Cox-Stanton (Savannah College of Art & Design) and Dr. Allison de Fren (Occidental College), two leading videographic scholars who recently co-edited an issue of the online journal The Cine-Files dedicated to the scholarly video essay. Our conversation centers on the creation of the issue, what they hope the issue contributes to the field's understanding of the scholarly video essay, and how the scholarly video essay differs from other forms of videographic criticism.
The episode also features the first part of a conversation between me and Shant Bayramian, a Netherlands-based video essayist who runs the YouTube channel, The Audiovisual Essayist. The conversation was published in three parts and is entitled, "The Video Essay: What Do New Practitioners Think?" All three parts can be found on Shant's YouTube page.
Focus Activism: Cinematic Protest - Video Essays & Black Lives Matter
Next month, selections from the Black Lives Matter Video Essay Playlist will screen at Filmfest Dresden. As a preview to the screening, Kevin B. Lee, Cydnii Wilde Harris, and I were interviewed by Laura Schulze and Sven Pötting about curating the playlist. Watch above.
(P.S. I really need to take an actual headshot!)
Sharing Stories: On Poupelle of Chimney Town — IFFR 2021
The summer edition of the 50th International Film Festival Rotterdam is currently underway, and will run through June 6. I was honored to be asked to make a second video essay for the festival, this time to accompany the closing film, Poupelle of Chimney Town. It’s a beautiful film that I would encourage you all to watch whenever possible! I’ll share the video essay here soon, but in the meantime, check out the film on the IFFR website.
News & Notes
I need your help curating this section! Is there something going on in the video essay world that you think others should know about? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Via Kevin B. Lee: After a four month Covid-induced delay, the Vive le cinéma exhibition - with firsttime installation works by five of the world's leading filmmakers - is now open at the NL Eyemuseum in Amsterdam. The works are accompanied by video essays by some of the form’s leading practitioners. More here.
From Polygon: “The Video Essays that Spawned an Entire YouTube Genre”
The program for the 2021 European Network for Cinema and Media Studies Conference includes a fascinating panel with Liz Greene, Ian Garwood, Jaap Kooijman, Kevin B. Lee, and John Gibbs. More here.
The International MUTA Festival of Audiovisual Appropriation is soliciting video essays for its fifth edition, which will take place virtually in September. The last day to submit is July 11. More here.
An interview with Chloé Galibert-Laîné and Kevin B. Lee on Bottled Songs for Public Parking by Matt Turner.
A new blog post by the Screenworks editorial team on the journal’s new effort to increase accessibility by requiring that all audio-visual works include captions.
Screen Worlds: Decolonising Film and Screen Studies is looking for contributions to their website’s next wave of research and resources: films, audiovisual essays, interviews, toolkits, articles/essays. The deadline is September 1, 2021. More here.
Via Bria Nachele: A portrait of Dr. Terri Francis shot on 16mm film and featuring Terri’s new book, Josephine Baker’s Cinematic Prism. Watch Bria’s film, and listen to Episode 25 of The Video Essay Podcast featuring Terri!
And finally, a couple of weeks ago I asked folks to share some great video essays they’ve recently watched or made. Check out the thread below and enjoy!