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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Co-Star Filmmakers/Curators:

I Saw Bones

Caroline Koebel, Self-Dial
January 24, 2017

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
Rita brought Miranda to UC, San Diego, when I was a grad student there (mid-90s / I was in my 20s) and she presented a Big Miss Moviola program.

What interested you about the project?
Rita invited me to submit my video Self-Dial. I believe it was when she was fairly deep in her curatorial process (and if I remember correctly it was Kate Haug, also part of I Saw Bones, who originally recommended my work). I thought I Saw Bones would be an exciting venue for my work!

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with your movie?
Self-Dial considers emerging reproductive technologies through science fictional and mythological means, combining Super8, 16mm reversal and negative, and Hi8 video in a work whose ultimate form is video.

I completed Self-Dial in 1993, so that means I was in my mid-20s and living in NYC. I remember how in the early 90s questions of sexuality and identity were a catalyst for all sorts of cultural phenomena. At this time also reproductive technologies were finding a more central place in the social sphere, and there was an ensuing heated debate about how this medical science was being applied to real subjects at that moment as well as projections for the future. PAing on a production by Kathy High called Underexposed: Temple of the Fetus, in tandem with the general atmosphere, inspired me to craft my own framework to investigate questions of the body and the multiplication of self.

From there it was a total adventure. I’d take the Peter Pan out from Port Authority to western Massachusetts and Jenifer Maslow and I would concoct all sorts of scenarios to film. Often scenes would present themselves. The place, land, animals, and people were all so full of life. At that time Jenifer was living and working on the small farm of Portia Weiskel. I had been introduced recently to the 1979 science fiction film by Andrei Tarkovsky, Stalker, which filled my head with images too irresistible to leave behind and so especially in the subject and boat moving on water shots I tried to entertain Stalker zeitgeist. Later my challenge would be to structure the footage that I had shot in both Super 8 and 16mm black-and-white film.

In 1991 I received an Artist’s Residency at Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester to work on my 16mm film Knucklebones: Self-Sustaining Members of the Human Species, but when I got there the flatbed editing machine was out for repair. This loss became a gain in that I worked instead on Self-Dial at VSW’s postproduction facility. I had brought the Super 8 and 16mm footage with me and was able to transfer it to video and begin editing. Then in 1992 I received Experimental Television Center’s Finishing Funds for completion of Self-Dial, which helped a lot in paying for equipment rental to finish the editing back in NYC (this was before nonlinear digital editing on one’s own laptop!).

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
As a maker of short films and videos, it’s always exciting to see how a curator will contextualize my work. The framework of I Saw Bones gives my title Self-Dial meaning different from what it would have elsewhere. Every single movie on this compilation is captivating. The dynamic between the various titles transforms each of the works; they signify in relation to one another. At the same time, their combination embraces the differences between them. I love it! Hold over that the umbrella of Big Miss Moviola (now Joanie 4 Jackie) and everybody’s singing in the rain!

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Eva Aridjis, Taxidermy: The Art of Imitating Life
October 1, 2016

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I was contacted by the curators after my short film screened at Sundance in 1999. I was 24 or 25 at the time.

What interested you about the project?
The quality of the films included. They were all interesting, edgy and original. And they were all made by women! And I was also a fan of Miranda July’s work, so her involvement was an additional attraction.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
I considered myself a budding filmmaker at that time. I was just finishing film school (an MFA at NYU) and my short “Taxidermy: The Art of Imitating Life” was in fact a student film. So at the time I had made several short films but I hadn’t made a feature yet.

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I thought it was a great collection of work and I was honored to be included. In retrospect I feel the same!

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
I was and have always been inspired by the short films of Man Ray, Maya Deren, Luis Buñuel and Kenneth Anger. In terms of more contemporary short/experimental film and video makers I was inspired by Miranda July, Nick Zedd, Bruce Conner, Bill Viola, Laurie Anderson, Bruce Nauman, Yoko Ono, Mike Kelley and many others.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I am still a filmmaker but I make more traditional narrative and documentary features now. I have made three documentary features- Children of the Street, Saint Death, Chuy, The Wolf Man, and two narrative features- The Favor and The Blue Eyes. My next narrative feature will be produced by Vice Films and is titled Animalia.

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Ximena Cuevas, Hawai
September 29, 2016

How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
Rita Gonzalez curated the tape, she chose my video “Hawai” for it, I think framed with the other works gets a very disturbing tone.

What interested you about the project?
Around that time I saw for the first time Miranda July performing, it was “Love Diamond” in Cinematexas, it was one of the most powerful things I have seen, I just couldn’t move from the chair, it was as poetic as terrifying, as sweet as painful. So in addition to her personal work I found the Big Miss Moviola project super brilliant, to put together as an independent artist all these female voices was just a treasure.

At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
Yes, I was already a video artist working with the idea of the fragility of such a thing named “reality”, Hawai was part of a series about creating fictions of life.

Do you have any specific anecdotes or memories associated with your movie?
I used to have my camera with me all the time, the rule of game was in a single day to make life into fictional snapshots. The women in Hawai were dancing in a wedding and I liked the idea of them transported to Hawai.

What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I think I answered that in the previous question about the project. I still think it is a treasure.

If you attended a screening, can you tell us where and when it was and anything else you remember about it?
No, I just had some of them in VHS tapes, something I really liked, I remember watching them in bed, so it was very intimate.

What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
In Mexico there wasn’t a video art or independent filmmaking culture at the time, the few of us were working like in islands. I was a lonesome artist, very avid to discover people working out of the mainstream. There was a very strong energy that stimulated me a lot, I was fascinated with artists like, as I said before, Miranda July, and also Sadie Benning, Lourdes Portillo, Naomi Uman, Sophie Calle, Kathy High and in Mexico Teresa Margolles (who is also as Semefo in the “I saw bones” tape), Silvia Gruner, Sarah Minter, women working from a very passionated privacy, inventing their own language. On the other hand I was going through the film classics, the melodrama, the Italian neorealism, the German expressionists, Buster Keaton and popular culture. And in art the Renaissance artists, and Goya, Rembrandt. I was very hungry. Reading Ionesco and listening Alberta Hunter.

What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I am still making videos but with no camera, in an ecology sense I work with recycling materials, also editing other things for a living, adult life steals a lot of time, but I am still fully passionated of moving images. I also have a conservation sea turtle project. We are all living in such a dark moment of humanity that I want a life of love and peace and awareness.

Anything you would like to see on the J4J site?
I want to see all the volumes of Big Miss Moviola.

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