Pablo de Ocampo,
July 26, 2016
How did you find out about Joanie 4 Jackie and how old were you at the time?
I was living in Portland for a couple months in early 1996 and I think I learned about it through flyers at shows and just word of mouth from people around town. I was 19 at the time and into music so I was going to shows whenever I could. I remember seeing Miranda play shows a couple times that year at some long gone venues: the Paris Theatre downtown and the Rexall Rose on Alberta. Also, I was doing at internship at the Northwest Film Center. I don’t remember who or what the context was, but I think someone there mentioned it to me as well.
What interested you about the project?
I grew up reading zines and being around the music scene, mostly as a listener/reader, but also made a few random zines here and there and had a not very serious art/noise band in high school. These brief activities aside, I wasn’t really a musician or a writer. At the time I first saw Miranda perform and learned about the chain letter tapes, I made art—films and sculpture mostly. So when I encountered people in the punk scene who had these parallel interests in art/film it was exciting for me.
At the time you participated in Joanie 4 Jackie did you consider yourself a filmmaker? What was your relationship to making movies?
I was only ever a fan and supporter of Joanie 4 Jackie. But back in the mid/late 90s, yes, I did consider myself a filmmaker.
What did you think/feel about the Joanie 4 Jackie at the time? And now, in retrospect?
I grew up in a very feminist aware punk scene in high school. Or rather, maybe not a scene, as it would be really misleading to characterize the punk scene in Phoenix in the early 90s as feminist, but I guess I was just in a group of friends that were committed to those ideas. So, this coupled with my interest in zines and in experimental film and video art led to my being really in awe of what the chain letter tapes were doing at the time. It was really the culmination of so many of my interests in a way that I had never seen before. Not being a woman or female identified, I didn’t participate as a maker but I did really champion of it and would tell everyone about it. I don’t think about this project all time, but when it does come up, I’m still really struck with how incredible it was. I don’t think I ever saw all the tapes, but even when I’ve scanned back and looked at the list of people included, particularly in those tapes from the 90s, I’m always amazed at how many of those people I came to know later in life.
What institutions, groups, people, publications and movements were inspiring you at the time of your participation in J4J?
Music in general, but especially a lot of things happening in the Pacific Northwest not exclusively what was going on with the Riot Grrrl scene. Art and film: Yoko Ono, Valie Export, Eva Hesse, Trinh Minh-Ha, Yvonne Rainer, Chris Marker and Louise Bourgois. Zines like Slant/Slander, Alien, Doris, Bamboo Girl, Dreamwhip, Cometbus. Books and writing: Dorothy Allison, Kathy Acker, Jorge Luis Borges.
What do you do now – professionally and otherwise? Are you still involved in filmmaking?
I don’t make films or other things anymore but have remained involved in film and art since that time, both personally just through my interests as well as professionally for at least fifteen years. That has involved working at a zine library and resource center, working at a film festival, and now working as a curator at a multi-disciplinary artist run centre in Vancouver, Canada. I still own a Bolex camera and have a box full of edited and unedited films in my closet.