Please join me alongside Caspar Stracke and Cathy Lee Crane on April 1st at the annual conference of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies in Atlanta.
Friday, April 1, 2016 02:15PM-04:00PM (Session M)
M18: Working With Farocki
Chair: Paige Sarlin (University at Buffalo, SUNY)
Respondent: Abina Manning (Video Data Bank)
Cathy Lee Crane (Ithaca College), “Farocki’s Hands: On the Problem of Performance in Non-Fiction film”
Caspar Stracke (University of the Arts Helsinki), “Build your own Farocki. Curating the 60th Flaherty Seminar.”
Paige Sarlin (University at Buffalo, SUNY), “Interview/Work: Farocki’s Die Bewerbung (1997) ”
Harun Farocki’s critical practice has served as a model for generations of documentary filmmakers; most prominently—Jill Godmilow, whose film What Farocki Taught (1998) is a perfect replica of Farocki’s Inextinguishable Fire. In the wake of his untimely death in 2014, Thomas Elsaesser spoke at a symposium honoring Farocki at Artist’s Space in New York City and he proclaimed Farocki to be the most important filmmaker of the contemporary age. This panel will explore the ways in which Harun Farocki’s as a writer, theorist, gallery artist, as well as a filmmaker and television producer, has provided rich material for contemporary documentary filmmakers, curators, artists, and scholars. Farocki’s films, videos, installations, and writing have responded to shifts in the general mode of production, changing contexts for the exhibition and circulation of documentary media, the transformation of funding structures, and the implication of media technology and image production in the control of political, economic, and cultural life. Approaching the topic of “working with” Farocki as something other than a matter of influence or legacy, this panel highlights the productive aspects of Farocki’s example and considers the notion of working from a variety of perspectives – literal, curatorial, theoretical, and aesthetic. The panel will feature a presentation by an artist-curator duo who set out to program the Flaherty Film Seminar with the intention that the entire programme would represent something of Farocki’s dynamic range and who will discuss the relation of curation to filmmaking and Farocki’s significance in the development of soft-montage within the gallery context. It will also include the reflections of a filmmaker who worked as a cinematographer on Farocki’s film I Thought I was Seeing Convicts and her discussion of how that experience has informed her understanding of the body and gesture in documentary. Lastly, there will be a paper by a scholar-practitioner who considers the significance of the question of work to Farocki’s interdisciplinary practice and to a range of other artists and filmmakers who are navigating the expansion of documentary practices into the gallery and museum.