Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at 7:30pm
The Roh and the Cooked: Structural Film, Actionism, Paracinema

Branden W. Joseph will discuss the travels of Tony Conrad and Beverly Grant throughout Europe in the early 1970s. Their itinerary, and the transformations in Conrad’s work upon his return to the United States, sheds light on the particular “crisis” of experimental cinema at the time and the manner in which it was (temporarily) overcome. Revising current understandings of the notion of there being “two avant-gardes” (as Peter Wollen famously put it), an examination of Conrad’s development and his interactions with Malcolm Le Grice, Wilhelm and Birgit Hein, and Otto Muehl will outline another line of avant-garde development. Drawn from Conrad’s personal archives and other research, this talk covers material that is not included in the author’s recent book, Beyond the Dream Syndicate: Tony Conrad and the Arts after Cage. The talk will be preceded by a screening of relevant films: Kurt Kren, Mama und Papa (1964); Malcolm Le Grice, Little Dog for Roger (1967); Wilhelm and Birgit Hein, Roh Film (1968); Annabel Nicholson, Slides (1970); and Tony Conrad, 4-X Attack (1973), Curried 7302 (1973), and 7302 Creole (1973).

Branden W. Joseph is Associate Professor of modern and contemporary art in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Columbia University. He is the author of Random Order: Robert Rauschenberg and the Neo-Avant-Garde (MIT Press, 2003), Anthony McCall: The Solid Light Films and Related Works (ed. Christopher Eamon; Northwestern University Press/Steidl, 2005) and, most recently, Beyond the Dream Syndicate: Tony Conrad and the Arts after Cage (Zone Books, 2008). His writings have also appeared in Artforum, Bookforum, Art Journal, Critical Inquiry, October, Texte zur Kunst, and Les Cahiers du Musée national d’art moderne, as well as in such catalogues as CTRL [SPACE]: Rhetorics of Surveillance from Bentham to Big Brother (2002), X-Screen: Film Installations and Actions in the 1960s and 1970s (2003), and Robert Rauschenberg: Combines (2005). He is also a founding editor of Grey Room, a journal of architecture, art, media, and politics, published quarterly by MIT Press since 2000.

Tickets - $7, available at door.

Pictured above: Frames from 7302 Creole, Tony Conrad, 16 mm, 1973, color, silent, 1 min