Tag Archives: elizabeth price

Screening the Museum

3 Jul
Elizabeth Price: User Group Disco

Elizabeth Price: User Group Disco

Screening the Museum, a programme of artists’ film and video about museums, took place at the Birkbeck Cinema on Gordon Square on Friday 29th June 2012. It was programmed by me and presented by Suzannah Biernoff and me, with Laura Mulvey introducing the second session.

The films in the programme all took museums and collections as their subject in one way or another, from the examination and animation of objects to the museum as a site of interaction, to the critique of museum institutions.

The running order for the first session, a compilation of shorts, was:

Mouse Heaven, Dir Kenneth Anger, 2004, 11 mins

While Darwin Sleeps, Dir Paul Bush, 2004, 5 mins

The Phantom Museum, Dir Quay Brothers, 2003, 12 mins

Narrative Remains, Dir Karen Ingham, 2009, 12 mins

Museum of Stolen Souls, Dir Chris Elliott, 1993, 7 mins

Historia Naturae (Suita), Dir Jan Švankmajer, 1967, 9 mins

Monkey King Causes Havoc in the Heavenly Palace, Dirs Cai Yuan and Jian Jun Xi, 2004, 10 mins

Every Painting in the MoMA on 10 April 2010, Dir Chris Peck, 2010, 2 mins

Museum Hours (Preview), Dir Jem Cohen, 2012, 7 mins

Hole, Dir Adam Chodzko, 2007, 12 mins [excerpt]

User Group Disco, Dir Elizabeth Price, 2009, 15 mins

After a short break, Laura Mulvey introduced a fascinating film she made with Mark Lewis at the moment of the USSR’s collapse in 1991:

Disgraced Monuments, Dirs Laura Mulvey and Mark Lewis, 1994, 50 mins

and discussion of its implications continued apace over wine and food in the Gordon Square basement.

Links above to online versions of the films screened are offered in the following spirit:

The difference between watching a postcard-sized, poor resolution image of a film and truly experiencing that film can be correlated to students with seeing a photograph (or photocopy!) of a painting vs. the genuine item. Teach this as a form of media literacy.

which is from Jem Cohen’s The Double {+} Anchor: Notes Towards a Common Cause, a manifesto for the support of independent artists’ moving image well worth reading (we were very pleased to be screening films from LUX artists moving image collection and to have their support for the programme).

You can download the programme notes (pdf).

My interest is (natch) particularly in the work of (experimental) moving image artists who take the museum as their subject of representation. If you’re interested in the broader field of interaction between cinema and museums, check out the programme of last year’s conference Moving Image and Institution: Cinema and the Museum in the 21st Century to see who’s working on what in the field.