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March 15, 2018

2007 Interview with Millie Goldsholl

On April 20, 2007, Chicago Film Archives Executive Director Nancy Watrous interviewed Millie Goldsholl, filmmaker and designer, at her home in Highland Park, Illinois. The following edited excerpts feature Millie describing her earliest work at the School of Design (now the IIT Institute of Design) in Chicago, where she studied under Hungarian-born artist László Moholy-Nagy. Millie passed away in 2012 at the age of 92.

March 7, 2018

CFA International Media Mixer 2018: Meet the Artists!

We’re so thrilled to introduce the amazing lineup of artists who are participating in our first ever CFA International Media Mixer! If you aren’t already familiar with the project, please read more about it here.

Giuseppe Boccassini (IT) + Alex Inglizian (US)
Lori Felker (US) + Patrizia Oliva (IT)
Federico Francioni & Yan Cheng (IT) + Tomeka Reid (US)

Domietta Torlasco (US) + Stefano Urkuma De Santis (IT)

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GIUSEPPE BOCCASSINI

Giuseppe Boccassini is an Italian filmmaker mainly working in Germany and Italy. He graduated in film theory at the University of Bologna and in film direction at The New University of Cinema and Television in Cinecittà (Rome). His work has been shown at several international film festivals and exhibitions, including FID Marseille (France), Torino Film Festival (Italy), FESTACURTAS BH (Brasil), Punto de Vista (Spain), Trentino History Museum (Italy). By transforming and manipulating various sources of archival material, his work reflects upon the notion of a haptic proximity of contemporary media. He considers film as “a phallic conquerer that, folding in on itself, now flaccid deus ex machina, observes itself from the inside like a lysergic membrane that slowly founders between the folds of its own material”. His most recent collaborations includes the film editing for Aldo Tambellini’s solo exibithion Black Matters, at ZKM Karlsruhe (Germany). He is one of the curators of Fracto, a new experimental film screening event at ACUD macht neu, in Berlin. http://giuseppeboccassini.com/

 

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ALEX INGLIZIAN

Alex Inglizian is a Chicago based artist, composer, musician, engineer and educator. His work explores the boundaries of noise, harmony, silence, space, performance, and improvisation. He is a graduate of The School of The Art Institute of Chicago and is currently a co-director and lead recording engineer at Experimental Sound Studio, an internationally recognized non-profit sound art organization. Alex is also a professor of sound for film studies and music technology at Northwestern University. He frequently performs among the vibrant Chicago experimental music scene and regularly collaborates with local filmmakers. Inglizian is deeply influenced by the rich history of experimental electronic music and free jazz, and continues to draw inspiration from the contemporary artists he works with professionally and creatively on a daily basis. https://soundcloud.com/soundofjoy

 

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LORI FELKER

Lori Felker is a filmmaker/artist, teacher, programmer, and performer. Her films and videos attempt to study the ineloquent, oppositional, delusional, frustrating, and chaotic qualities of human interaction. Lori works in a variety of mediums and styles and has shown her work internationally at a variety of film festivals and art spaces. She lives in Chicago, loves to collaborate, and is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and the Film/Video programmer at Roots & Culture Gallery. http://www.felkercommalori.com/

 

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PATRIZIA OLIVA

Patrizia Oliva is a singer, autor, improviser of experimental music that crosses electronics, electro-acoustic, free jazz and performing arts. Her research is aimed on a redefinition of contemporary singer. She has played with many musicians, among other with Gino Robair, Stefano Giust, Pamelia Kurstin, Edoardo Marraffa, Tommy Greenwood, Martin Mayes, Tristan Honsinger Linda Sharrock, Silvia Bolognesi, Alessandro Bosetti and many others. She has toured Italy, U.S.A, Scotland, United Kingdom, The Netherlands, France, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Slovenja, Croatia, Belgium, Austria and Vietnam. Some places and festivals she has played in: AngelicA (Bologna), Fondazione Mudima (Milano), Reggia Venaria (Torino), Limmitationes/Chilli Jazz Festival (Austria), Hanoi New Music Festival (Vietnam), Area Sismica (Forlì), Museum of Modern Art (Ohio, USA), Piccolo Teatro (Milano), ZDB (PT), ZXZW Festival (NL), Fusion Festival (D), The Empire Gallery Galvanised Festival (UK), Spazio O (Milano), Postgarage (AT) and more. She has recorded an impressive number of albums with several experimental labels such as Setola di Maiale, Afe Records, Sonoscopia and many more. https://patriziaoliva.wordpress.com/

 

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FEDERICO FRANCIONI & YAN CHENG

Federico Francioni (1988) graduated in 2010 with a degree in History of Cinema, discussing a thesis about Otar Iosseliani. In 2013 he’s admitted at the National Film School of Italy, the “Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia”. In 2016 he realizes with his colleague Yan Cheng the medium documentary Tomba del Tuffatore (Tomb of the Diver), which premiered at Pesaro Film Festival. In the same year they started working on their first feature documentary, shot in China. In 2017 he attends a course at “Ateliers Varan”, and he’s currently working on a documentary feature in Paris. He’s also curator of an upcoming interview and monography about the french director Eugène Green. After studying history and anthropology in the United States, Yan Cheng (1991) took up his studies at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia – the National Film School of Italy (Rome). He has realized various short films and documentaries in China, United States, and Europe. He develops an artistic practice in cinema, contemporary art, and academic research. In 2016 he realizes with Federico Francioni the medium documentary Tomb of the Diver. In the same year they started working on their first feature documentary, shot in China.

 

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TOMEKA REID

Chicago based cellist, composer and educator, Tomeka Reid has been described as “a remarkably versatile player,” (Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune). Equally adept in classical and jazz contexts, Ms. Reid predominantly finds herself in experimental and improvisatory settings and composes for a wide range of instrumentation, from big band to chamber ensemble. Ms. Reid’s music combines her love for groove along with freer concepts. Ms. Reid is an integral part of Dee Alexander’s Evolution Ensemble, Nicole Mitchell’s Black Earth Ensemble/Strings, Mike Reed’s Loose Assembly, the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) Great Black Music Ensemble, and co-leads the internationally recognized string trio, Hear in Now with performances in Poznan, Poland; Paris, France; Rome, Venice, Milan, Italy; Soazza, Switzerland; and in the US: Chicago, New York and Vermont. In addition to the aforementioned ensembles, Ms. Reid performs with many of today’s forward thinking musicians in the world of jazz and creative music including Anthony Braxton, George Lewis, Roscoe Mitchell, Jeb Bishop, Myra Melford, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Mary Halvorson, Denis Fournier, Edward Wilkerson and Harrison Bankhead. Ms. Reid also leads her own trio featuring guitarist Matt Schneider and bassist Josh Abrams, for which she composes. Ms. Reid can be heard on numerous studio recordings. As a composer, Ms. Reid has been commissioned by the AACM, the Chicago Jazz Festival and the Chicago Jazz Ensemble and has had several opportunities to showcase her work abroad at festivals such as Umbria Jazz, An Insolent Noise and Vignola Jazz. She has been nominated and awarded residencies for composition with the Ragdale Foundation and the 2nd Annual Make Jazz Fellowship hosted by the 18th Street Arts Organization. Ms. Reid was selected as a 2012 participant in the Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute held at the University of California: Los Angeles. http://www.tomekareid.net/

 

DomiettaTorlasco

DOMIETTA TORLASCO

Domietta Torlasco is a critical theorist, filmmaker, and associate professor of Italian and comparative literature at Northwestern University. She is the author of two books: The Time of the Crime: Phenomenology, Psychoanalysis, Italian Film (Stanford University Press, 2008) and The Heretical Archive: Digital Memory at the End of Film (University of Minnesota Press, 2013), both investigating cinema’s capacity to remember forgotten pasts and imagine alternative futures. In recent years, her research has expanded into the domain of audiovisual practice and found in the essay its most proper form. While mixing fiction and documentary, her pieces perform an inquiry into the political stakes of a series of aesthetic operations—the framing of spaces, the tracing of borders, the delimitation of enclosures (domestic or otherwise), wherein people are asked to live together. Her video essays have screened at national and international venues, including the Galerie Campagne Première in Berlin.

 

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STEFANO URKUMA DE SANTIS

URKUMA is Stefano De Santis, born in the South-east part of Italy. He began his artistic career as a playwright, and later developed his unique musical approach to translate his theatre concepts into sound. The word Urkuma is specific to the FinisTerrae part of Italy and expresses a state of mind, that is possible to compare with the opposite to the Buddhist concept of nirvana. Urkuma did releases, performances and installations in Italy, Poland, Usa, Austria, Swiss, Slovack Rep., Japan and has collaborated with a wide range of musicians. Live, Urkuma is used to play anything within his reach, including small electronic devices, clarinet, TrumpLoo, home-built instruments and tapes. https://vimeo.com/98934499

March 2, 2018

Inspecting Millie Goldsholl’s Personal Reels

By Olivia Babler

Since joining Chicago Film Archives as a transfer technician last October, one of my main long-term projects has consisted of inspecting, stabilizing and digitizing films from the Mort & Millie Goldsholl Collection as part of the “Woman Behind the Camera” project. While the couple are best known for their mid-century graphic design and advertising campaigns with Chicago-based Goldsholl Design & Film Associates, this grant has enabled CFA to spend more time focusing on the home movies and travel footage Millie Goldsholl (1920–2012) shot across the U.S., Japan, Africa and Europe in the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s.

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Label taped to an otherwise untitled reel in the Mort & Millie Goldsholl Collection

Our first step towards making Millie’s films accessible was to complete inspection of the vast collection, which was donated to CFA in 2006 and 2010. Just last week, the CFA team wrapped up inspecting all 322 16mm films in our Goldsholl collection. In addition to completing condition reports and collecting metadata for each film, we also prepared the films for digitization by attaching fresh leader, measuring shrinkage, and testing the resilience of splices. While there was the occasional unpleasant surprise (Mold! Masking tape splices! Vinegar syndrome! Indecipherable handwriting!), we were delighted to find that almost all of Millie’s films have maintained their vibrant colors (thanks, Kodachrome!) and had not shrunken too much to be transferred on our Tobin telecine. As we inspected, we came across stunning footage and lovely family moments that we are excited to share in the coming months.

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Frames from “Lake Placid Holiday 1941 (M+M 1st vacation)” (1941)

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Frames from “Moss Park & Sand Shrine” (ca. 1964)

Fellow transfer technician Justin Dean and I have also been busy digitizing Millie’s films for access. The films so far have featured a range of activities and settings across the globe—art fairs and carnivals in Chicago, safaris in Kenya, anti-war protests in Washington, D.C., cormorant fishing in Japan—all shot with beautiful and surprising compositions. Millie also captured many tender family moments featuring Mort and their children, Harry and Gleda, laughing and creating art together. My favorite film we have transferred so far is a gorgeous black-and-white film of students playing drums and dancing on the campus of the Dyer-Bennet school of minstrelsy in Aspen, Colorado (it also features a very adorable kitten, as well as a game of croquet!). This film, along with many other films shot by Millie, will soon stream on CFA’s website.

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Still from “Dyer-Bennet School – Aspen” (1949)

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