Slowness and Slow Cinema

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My student Spencer Slovic has just published an excellent video essay on “Slowness and Slow Cinema” at Film Matters, which will be of interest to people thinking about contemporary and world cinema, or simply interested in the medium of the video essay (and this is a very good one!).

Spencer’s video grew out of an assignment for my “Post-Cinema” seminar, which I taught in the winter quarter of 2017. An earlier version was featured in the exhibition I curated at Stanford, Post-Cinema: Videographic Explorations (you can still see all of the videos online).

In any case, the version featured in Film Matters is much improved, having gone through a rigorous peer-review process. Take a look!

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Matthew Wilson Smith: The Nostalgia of VR

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On Tuesday, May 15th, we’ll have our fourth and final Digital Aesthetics Workshop of the Spring quarter, “The Nostalgia of Virtual Reality” with Matthew Wilson Smith, at 4 PM in the Stanford Humanities Center Board Room. In this workshop, we will discuss the degree to which emergent technologies of virtual reality are indebted to longstanding concepts of presence and disembodied consciousness.

Matthew Wilson Smith is an Associate Professor of German Studies and Theatre and Performance Studies at Stanford University. His  interests include modern theatre; modernism and media; and relations between technology, science, and the arts. His book The Nervous Stage: 19th-century Neuroscience and the Birth of Modern Theatre explores historical intersections between the performing arts and the neurological sciences and traces the construction of a “neural subject” over the course of the nineteenth century. It was published by Oxford University Press in 2017. His previous book, The Total Work of Art: From Bayreuth to Cyberspace (Routledge, 2007), presents a history and theory of modern artistic synthesis, placing such diverse figures as Wagner, Moholy-Nagy, Brecht, Riefenstahl, Disney, Warhol, and contemporary cyber-artists within a genealogy of totalizing performance.

Syllabus: Let’s Make a Monster! Critical Making (Stanford, Spring 2018)

Somehow I forgot to post the syllabus for “Let’s Make A Monster! Critical Making,” which Paul DeMarinis and I are currently teaching as a hybrid Film & Media Studies and Art Practice class in the Department of Art & Art History at Stanford. The main focus of the course, as the title indicates, is the production of monsters in a variety of media and informed by reading literary, philosophical, and other critical texts on making and monstrosity. Students have been making some truly astounding work, and I look forward to being able to present some of it later in the quarter. We will be organizing an exhibition of works on campus, and I will post images here.

New Review of Post-Cinema in Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft 18 (2018)

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There is a new review of several works on all things post-cinematic, including Post-Cinema: Theorizing 21st-Century Film (which I co-edited with Julia Leyda), alongside Francesco Casetti’s The Lumière Galaxy; Malte Hagener, Vinzenz Hediger, and Alena Strohmaier’s edited collection The State of Post-Cinema; Vinzenz Hediger and Miriam de Rosa’s special issue Post-What? Post-When?; and Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky’s Queeres Post-Cinema.

The review, in German, is titled “Werden/Weiter/Denken: Rekapitulation eines Post-Cinema Diskurses” (roughly: Becoming/Further/Thinking — suggesting a thinking in flux and a thinking beyond — Recapitulation of a Post-Cinema Discourse). The text, by Elisa Linseisen from the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, appears in Zeitschrift für Medienwissenschaft 18 (2018). The full text is available as an open-access PDF.