Where is She Now?

Were you a participant in J4J? Did you send a tape or attend a screening?
Please share your memories with us. Select the link that best applies to you:
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Chainletter Filmmakers:

The Sugar Caneletter

Eileen Maxson, Your Weekend Forecast, with Nora Gamble (also Untitled (Cinderella+++) on The Sugar Caneletter)
December 3, 2016

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I was 21 or 22 at the time, and found out about J4J one of three ways (or from all!) – through Vinyl Edge, a record store, then in the suburbs of Houston, TX. The owner had some of the earlier chain letters on VHS together with band videos. This was also around the time that I started going to screenings at Aurora Picture Show, a microcinema in Houston, which also would have introduced me. OR I was taking a video class from filmmaker Jenny Stark at University of Houston. She introduced me to a lot of film and video makers and works.

What interested you about the project?
Women making and sharing their movies in an alternative community.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
I was beginning to. I started making videos around that time. I was going to school for photography, which then grew into videos. Cinderalla+++ was made as media critique assignment in Jenny Stark’s video class at University of Houston.

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with your movie?
I remember shooting “Your Weekend Forecast” in the bungalow that I lived in next door to Aurora Picture Show, Andrea Grover and Carlos Lama. It was, in retrospect, an idyllic and formative time for me as a maker.

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I admired, and still admire, the makers who contributed to, produced, curated and are now archiving the project. The project created a sense of belonging for me to a community, and a feeling of commonality with those involved which endures to the present.

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
Aurora Picture Show, Andrea Grover, Jenny Stark, Cinematexas, NYUFF… to name just a few

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I’m an artist and educator, yes.

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Erika Lari, In Either Direction
November 26, 2016

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I did my undergrad in Olympia, WA and was a big fan of Miranda July.

What interested you about the project?
The fact that I would see movies by other women and they would see mine. I thought it was a very inspired project.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
This was my first film. I’ve always loved film and this was my Masters project. I really wanted to experiment with editing and I considered myself a filmmaker, but a very amateur one.

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with your movie?
I filmed it in Greece on super 8. It was just me and some friends I met from school at Central Saint Martins in London. At the time, Athens was very cheap. When they saw an ‘American filmmaker’ with this funky little camera, people were so overly gracious. I almost felt bad. They were sending buskers out of shots. It was hilarious.

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I thought it was great fun, but I didn’t think it would lead to exposure of the film. Now, I think otherwise.

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
At the time, I was an overeducated kid working at a record store. I just kept going to movies. Primarily at the Olympia Film Society. That was about all I had.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I’m a graphic designer professionally. I’m working on a documentary about a 90s band from rural Washington. It’s the first project I’ve really taken on since In Either Direction and I’m really excited. https://m.facebook.com/TallToadDocumentary/

Anything you would like to see on the J4J site?
A better copy of my movie!

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Kate Hartman, Surfacing
March 17, 2013

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I must have been 19 or 20? I learned about it in school. Or maybe on the internet. But I remember watching one of Miranda’s early pieces in my Video Art class and some how that led me to J4J.

Later, when I had graduated I became the assistant to the Film Department and was told that we would be caring for the J4J archives! They arrived in many boxes and I helped with organizing them and producing one or two more chain letter tapes.

What interested you about the project?
The connection! The bold romanticism. The sassy can-do attitude. In addition to wanting to share my work I wanted to be a part of THAT.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
Yes, of sorts. I was making films and videos. I was a student in the Film & Electronic Arts program at Bard College. I was learning about avant-garde film and video art for the very first time. I has spent my adolescent years as a photographer and was excited to learn about ways in which I could expand my practice. I was making 16mm films and learning about digital video editing for the very first time. I can remember that the animation of the text in the video I submitted took about 20 hours to render!

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with the project?
It was the first time my work was ever shared or distributed within the context of my field! It was hugely empowering. Since then I’ve given a TED talk, shown work at the MOMA, and written a book, but nothing quite had the same zing of that initial realization that STRANGERS, fellow lady movie makers that I DIDN’T EVEN KNOW could be watching my video is places I hadn’t even heard of!

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
At the time I was just excited about getting my work out there. Now, as a professor and an artist who likes working with participation I’m more interested in the overall structure, the tone, and the social contract associated with the J4J project.

If you attended a screening, can you tell us where and when it was and anything else you remember about it?
We held a few screenings at Bard.

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
The Yes Men, Matt McCormick, Sidney Petersen, Luis Bunuel

I was thinking about the internet, taking a lit class in New Media, playing with site-specific theater, and collecting people’s dreams.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I am a professor at an art & design school (OCAD University) in Toronto. I am also an artist, designer, inventor, and I do a lot of public speaking. The only films I make now are demonstrations of the interactive objects I created. Once I started making video installations it made me want to learn about sensors and interactivity. So I went to grad school and somehow I ended up in with a specialty in wearable technology! But the themes of my work are still the same – longing, understanding, connection. Attempts to explore the ways in which we relate to ourselves, each other, and the work around us.

Anything you would like to see on the J4J site?
What’s next? The world has changed so much since the 90s. What’s the modern version of the chainletter tape? And what work is it crucial for us to see women making today? I think about that a lot in my own work. I want to see what Joanie 4 Jackie will do next. What’s the latest challenge? What’s the newest promise? And how can we share it all in a meaningful way?

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Linda Feesey, Sex and Death with Little Teddy
May 24, 2016

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
Miranda July personal appearance and screening in Toronto at Cinecycle sponsored by the Pleasure Dome collective.

What interested you about the project?
I wanted to get my work into a public forum of young women.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
I had been a filmmaker for many years and was somewhat older.

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with the project?
It was shot in rural Ontario and I remember a couple of shots I really liked. One is of a bumble bee on a Scotch thistle swaying in the wind in an overgrown field. Also, a vaselined shot of cows. They came up right to the camera out of curiosity.

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I think it was something of its time. Lo-fi, communal, volunteer. It was quaint and innocent of commercial concerns.

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
Pleasure Dome screening collective.
Broken Pencil magazine on zines.
Into the Wasteland performance events.
Paul McCarthy and Mike Kelley.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I am not involved in filmmaking for the past 5 years. I am a full-time public librarian.

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Olivia Ciummo, Movie For Mum
March 22, 2013

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I feel like I heard about J4J when I was looking for other women making films and exploring artists.

What interested you about the project?
I remember being super excited about this project! The thought of sending around your work to other filmmakers who were making from similar experiences felt so right!

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
YES! Yeah, I was a filmmaker, still am.

I was just about to finish undergrad, a production program in Pittsburgh PA where I was the only woman graduating from the program that year. I was making experimental works on 16 mm and had also started showing my work nationally in micro cinemas and art venues.

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with the project?
I remember my friend Becky and I gave Miranda July our tape in person after one of her live performances in Pittsburgh Pa. A bit later I received correspondence that my friend Becky and I would be included! I remember getting in touch with some of the folks on the Sugar Caneletter. Eileen Maxson was it you or did we meet later?

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I loved it; I thought it was such an original way to connect with other filmmakers. In retrospect, I feel the same!

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
At the time I was working at Pittsburgh Filmmakers with T. Foley, one of my mentors and close friends on the Media Literacy Arts Education Program. Both she and the institution were great inspirations. I also was a huge fan of attending of Jefferson Presents, a local micro cinema where I got to see all the amazement of experimental film. I found my inspiration in friends, music, Jefferson Presents, teaching, filmmaking, traveling, Riot grrrl, throbbing gristle…really anything intense.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
These days I’m lucky enough to just be working on my art, making new film works, thinking + writing for a full length film, doing a residency and screening my stuff. Last year I taught in Higher Education, Film and Video Production + Time-based Arts.

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