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March 28, 2016

CFA Media Mixer 2016: Meet this Year’s Artists

Our annual video remix benefit is BACK this year with yet another amazing lineup of artists working together to create new video works out of digitized items in our vault. Right now, three extraordinary filmmakers are loading up with massive amounts of footage culled from the deepest corners of our collections – including some rare, little-seen gems and a few staff...
March 11, 2016

The arrival of the Kinetta Archival Film Scanner

Amy here. I arrived at CFA two months ago to serve as Digital Collections Manager. One of the cardinal reasons I was brought onto the CFA team was to help guide a refining and expansion of the archive’s digital initiatives, with the Kinetta Archival Film Scanner being a big part of the initiative. As we awaited the arrival of the...
February 18, 2016

The John D. and Catherine C. MacArthur Foundation Honors CFA

Chicago Film Archives is so pleased to announce that we are a recipient of the 2016 MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.  It came as a surprise.  We are among several other cultural institutions in Chicago who have received this honor, and we are in great company. “These superbly imaginative organizations exemplify Chicago’s thriving arts and culture community, which...
January 18, 2016

Ruth Page Collection Fully Catalogued

Guest poster here—it’s Pamela Krayenbuhl, announcing that I have completed the cataloguing process for the vast Ruth Page Collection of dance film and video. It has been a long journey, but now that I’ve earned the advantage of hindsight, I am pleased to provide a general overview of the collection and highlight a few gems of particular interest (out of...
November 16, 2015

Collection Spotlight: Robert Stiegler

We received the film work of Chicago photographer Robert Stiegler earlier this year, and while we already put a few of his major titles streaming online, I wanted to put a brief spotlight on him and his work, which includes some fantastic, experimental depictions of Chicago in the 1960s. Robert Stiegler was born in Chicago in 1938 and received a...
October 6, 2015

Now Streaming: The Larry Janiak Collection

Larry Janiak, 2004 We’ve been talking a lot about Chicago filmmaker/artist/designer, Larry Janiak, lately. We screened his films this past summer at Anthology Film Archives, and again this past week with Conversations at the Edge. We’re now excited to make his entire filmography publicly available (for the first time!) over on our Larry Janiak finding aid. We feel very fortunate...
September 14, 2015

Processing the Frank Koza Collection and “A Space to Grow” (1968)

Earlier this summer we started the project of processing and digitizing our Frank Koza Collection, which has provided the exciting opportunity to dig into and share some of what the collection has to offer. There’s still a lot more to work through, but we’ve already found some incredible gems! You can read a lot more about Frank’s exciting life on...
July 13, 2015

Larry Janiak Films Head to NYC

This week I’m headed to New York City to present a retrospective of Larry Janiak’s work at Anthology Film Archives (so E-X-C-I-T-E-D). Just in case, Anthology Film Archives is an archive and exhibitor of independent, experimental & avant-garde cinema…and in our opinion, the perfect place to present Larry’s films. Larry created a stunning body of experimental work from the years...
June 1, 2015

CFA receives 2015 NFPF Grant

We’re super excited to announce that we’ve received a 2015 National Film Preservation Foundation grant to photo-chemically preserve three titles from our collections! The three films slated for preservation highlight innovative programs introduced within the Chicago Public School (CPS) system in the 1960’s and 70’s: FROM A TO Z: THE STORY OF SPECIAL SUMMER SCHOOLS, Goldsholl Design & Film Associates...
April 29, 2015

Game: a South Shore High School production

This Sunday our guest programmer series, CFA Crashers, returns with selections from Lavon Nicole Pettis. Lavon’s program consists entirely of Chicago-made films that reflect her strong interest in art and community. She chose the Black Cinema House to present her film selections, which include a documentary on acclaimed Chicago sculptor, Richard Hunt, as well as a documentary on inspiring poet,...
April 28, 2015

Faces and Fortunes Restoration

This afternoon we received our first DVD reference copy of the newly restored film, FACES AND FORTUNES. This 16mm sponsored film was made in the 1960’s by Chicago-based design firm, Goldsholl Associates, as a filmic treatise on “corporate identity” for Kimberly-Clark Corporation. It was directed by Morton Goldsholl, conceived by Millie Goldsholl, executed by Morton & Millie, Wayne Boyer and...
March 30, 2015

CFA Media Mixer 2015: Meet this Year’s Artists

We are SO EXCITED to announce the artists for this year’s CFA Media Mixer event – our annual video re-mix benefit held at the Hideout. Over the next couple of months each filmmaker will work closely with his musical pairing to create and score a short video piece made from digitized films from our vault. We’re currently loading up our filmmakers...
January 12, 2015

Introducing the Jerome L. Schulman Collection

a good ol’ before & after shot of the Schulman Collection Chicago winters are rough. We all know that. Both your body and emotions seem to be at war with the subzero. But for me, with this battle comes stronger emotions, or rather, the latching onto anything that makes me smile or feel a little more intensely – my neighbor’s frolicking huskies*, a good...
November 21, 2014

JoAnn Elam Collection Update (part 2)

I thought it was about time to share an update on one of our most complicated and cherished collections – the JoAnn Elam Collection. Over the past few months, we’ve made a lot of progress and discoveries. And just this past week, we received a valuable package from JoAnn’s widower and former USPS colleague, Joe Hendrix. In the package was an unassuming...
September 12, 2014

Announcing our new YouTube Channel: “Wrestling From Chicago”

“This is Russ Davis, ringside, International Amphitheatre Chicago…” We are proud to announce the launch of our new YouTube page, Chicago Film Archives presents “Wrestling from Chicago.” The channel consists of digitized wrestling films from our Russ & Sylvia Davis Collection, and with one hundred videos already uploaded, visitors will have the opportunity to binge watch golden age wrestling predominantly...
August 4, 2014

45 years ago….the Chicago Apollo 11 Parade

As Collections Manager at CFA, I love finding connections among our collections, or better yet, finding documentation of the same event spread across various collections. Whenever this happens I admittedly find myself daydreaming of filmmakers crossing paths…possibly chatting with each other, comparing cameras and stocks. In the context of our collections, having multiple films shot on the same day of...
July 14, 2014

Nancy in the Tribune!

E. Jason Wambsgans, Chicago Tribune This past weekend CFA’s Executive Director, Nancy Watrous, was spotlighted in the Chicago Tribune. Take a look here or read below….     Nancy Watrous, film archivist Executive director of Chicago Film Archives preserves pictures of the city in reel time July 13, 2014|By William Hageman, Tribune Newspapers Being executive director of Chicago FilmArchives has...
July 3, 2014

Ruth Page Collection Update + a Surprise Find

RUTH PAGE COLLECTION UPDATE… We’re almost finished uploading all of the Ruth Page films to the Ruth Page Collection Finding Aid (we have about 25 films more to go). After that we will be uploading the collection’s videos, whose formats range from 2″ and 1″ open reel formats to the more familiar cassette varieties of Betacam and Betacam SP.  Thanks...
June 24, 2014

Introducing CFA CRASHERS

**CORRECTION** – please note the new start time of 6:00PM  Exciting news! We have a new film series in the works. It’s called CFA CRASHERS and it starts this August (over happy hour) at the Hideout. We’ve invited some of our favorite locals to guest curate a program of CFA films all their own (no rules or strings attached). The...
May 15, 2014

Earthkeeping, Episode Six: “Help Yourself”

The final episode of Earthkeeping delves into behavioral concepts such as nature vs. nurture, and investigates the ways in which the environment shapes personal behavior. Several psychological questions are raised, such as the degree to which an individual may act independently of his/her environment. The work of Dr. Roger Park, who spent 25+ years living in and studying a small...


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