Friday, 13 November 2009
2012: The machinery now exists to have the audience score a film live, creating an instant symphony from the movement of hundreds of eyes.
- If you aren’t watching properly, your optical bum notes will ruin it for everyone.
- One agitator closes his eyes, interprets a new movie in his mind’s eye from the dialogue and sounds. He traces the new images on his eyelids to create a curious counterpoint.
- But two copyright cops happen to be sitting behind him. They hold a kangaroo litigation.
- Sued for stealing the "narrative algorithm" of the film, the proof is in his head: they substitute the original values back in and retranslate the new movie back to the one on-screen.
(Whilst the audience jeer him for complicating their original soundtrack.)
- Copyright criminal! His eyeballs his weapon, he is betrayed by his own neurons!!
Saturday, 7 November 2009
WHERE: Paragon 12, Paragon Cineplex, Bangkok
WHEN: This Thursday, 12th November 2009, 13.30
COST: Enquire at venue
It's Nick's Birthday @ L'Alternativa Festival de Cinema Independent de Barcelona
PROGRAMME: Minor Symphonies
WHERE: Hall Screen, Barcelona Centre for Contemporary Culture (CCCB)
WHEN: Saturday 14th November, 18.30 and Wednesday 18th November, 22.00
It's Nick's Birthday @ 9th Falstaff International Film Festival
PROGRAMME: Music/Animation Strand
WHERE: Civic Hall, 14 Rother Street, Stratford-upon-Avon
WHEN: Friday 20th November, 14.30
Friday, 30 October 2009
Monday, 12 October 2009
Whilst walking the grounds of Zoomcitta this afternoon I dropped in on the workshop of our Future Films department, the office dedicated to using our infamous modified 2-D Quantum Propaganda Engine to dredge up cinematic artefacts that have not yet been created and ‘redestroy’ them for education and profit. How better to learn from our mistakes – society and filmmakers alike – than to watch them in 256 gaudy colours before they’ve even been made?
Saturday, 10 October 2009
WHAT: It's Nick's Birthday @ Antimatter Film Festival
PROGRAMME: Der Spiegel
WHERE: Cinecenta, University of Victoria Student Union Building, Victoria BC
WHEN: This Tuesday October 13th, 7pm
COST: $5.25-7.25 - see here
Monday, 21 September 2009
WHAT: It's Nick's Birthday @ Abandon Normal Devices (AND)
PROGRAMME: AND Short Fims Programme 1
WHERE: The Box, FACT, 88 Wood Street, Liverpool, L1 4DQ
WHEN: 12 noon, this Thursday 24th September
COST: £7/£5 (members & concessions)
Friday, 11 September 2009
Our redestruction of the 2112 televisual curiousity Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom will be available to watch in the most civilised setting of Manchester's Nexus Art Café for the next 6 weeks, as part of their She Laughs exhibition:
WHAT: Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom as part of She Laughs
WHERE: Nexus Art Café, Dale Street (opposite Vinyl Exchange), Manchester, M1 1JW
WHEN: 11th September - 21st October 2009 (Opening Friday 11th September 7 9 with performance)
An exploration of humour in this context.
What does humour do, what does it say or can it simply function as something to be enjoyed?
From the slapstick sketches of Draycott & Trimm to the mysterious drawings of Tom Adriani this exhibition highlights the different styles & modes of humour within contemporary visual art and culture.
Funny things are made to attract us or make us think. Belly laughs, giggles & nervous titters give us different experiences within the humour in this exhibition; something ‘she laughs’ seeks to highlight.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.
Taken from Proverbs 31 describes a hard working, content & well regarded woman who can laugh because of her confidence in life. This phrase was chosen as inspiration for the title of this exhibition as an aspiration; how often can we laugh at the days to come? This exhibition hopes to celebrate life - a moment of laughter in what some see as an uncertain world.
This exhibition is designed to explore Nexus as a community art space; a project started by the church to create a space to meet & spend our days & nights together in the heart of Manchester.
Nexus is constantly changing & developing the ways in which it approaches visual art. Not being a ‘white cube’ adds a number of things to the work that is shown in the space & this exhibition, designed by Liz Gaunt & Dylan Thomas takes that forward in its installation. This space has been transformed as a heightened reflection of its Northern Quarter surroundings. There are many visual references to the shabby chic vintage shops & record stores all around making this exhibition something familiar. The visitors to this show know how to flick through records & are welcome to use the same action with the 12’ mounted pieces. Like there rest of the northern quarter enjoying the comfort of nostalgia, rummaging through like old records, absorbing their images the way you might next door or across the road."
Monday, 31 August 2009
September Screenings: It's Nick's Birthday in Budapest & Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom in Manchester
It's Nick's Birthday will show at the BUSHO Budapest Short Film Festival, former hosts of both Pilot and our debut A Case Of Making The Knife Fit The Wound. If you’re in the area, the Institute heartily endorses spending at least a day and a night and a mealtime (oh sweet, sweet pasta!) at this intimate and friendly festival.
WHAT: It’s Nick’s Birthday @ BUSHO Budapest Short Film Festival
PROGRAM: Information Screening Mixer 2
WHERE: VÖRÖSMARTY SMALL HALL, VIII. Üllői út 4, Tel: 311 4542, Metro: M3 to Kálvin tér
WHEN: This Thursday, 3rd September 2009 @ 21:00
The Manchester Pilot screening is a different sort of arrangement. You will certainly remember that Manchester's Kinofilm festival gave both the film and the Institute our debut screening at their 9th incarnation in 2005. In the run up to the relaunched Kinofilm 11, the organization is putting on a series of short film nights, and Pilot will feature in next week's courtesy of guest programmers Cinematopia.
WHAT: Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom @ KINO SHORTS 5
Presented in association with CINEMATOPIA.
WHERE: Green Room, 54 56 Whitworth Street West, Manchester, M1 5WW
WHEN: Next Wednesday 9th September 2009 @ 20:00
COST: £4 full/ £3 (conc)
Some sort of public interrogation will take place after the screening, for which Pilot director Graeme Cole will represent the Institute. Please note it is advisable to email johnw[at]kinofilm.org.uk in advance to reserve tickets.
This from Cinematopias comms dept:
“Just to let you know we're running the BEST OF CINEMATOPIA 09 programme at KINO SHORTS in Manchester. If you missed it at Glastonferret now's your chance to see it, if not come and see it again on a reet big screen!
As usual in normal Kino style, a number of the filmmakers will be present to talk about their films and be grilled by our eager audience of Cinephiles. Questions posed by Manchester's one and only John Robb, legendary punk-rocker, journalist, writer and media commentator."
Friday, 14 August 2009
Our short Super-8 musical It's Nick's Birthday plays at the 15th Sarajevo Film Festival this weekend. If you, like my personal hero James Nesbitt (actor), are in town for the premier film festival in the Balkans, these are the details you will need:
PROGRAM: New Currents
WHERE: KINO MEETING POINT
WHEN: This Sunday, 16.08.2009,
COST: BAM 5,00 KM and KM 6,00
WHERE: POZORIŠTE MLADIH
WHEN: This Monday, 17.08.2009,
COST: 4,00 KM and 5,00 KM;
Glavni Box Office/Main Box Office
Bosanski kulturni centar, Branilaca Sarajeva 24
I won't be able to get away from the office, but if you happen to spot Mr Nesbitt and fellow guest, the lout Mickey Rourke (former pretty-boy),do set the former on the latter on my behalf - we'll soon see who the real so-called "Wrestler" is!
I apologise for any violent sentiment that may be implicit in this last paragraph. Really they should talk it out. I just wish I was there.
There are further screenings coming up at the BUSHO Budapest Short Film Festival at the beginning of September and the 7th World Film Festival of Bangkok (November 6 to 15) - more details when we get them.
Wednesday, 22 July 2009
WHAT: Its Nicks Birthday @ Gimli Film Festival
WHERE: Festival Box Office, 66 1st Ave, Gimli, Manitoba (on the corner of 1st and Goldfield Drive)
WHEN: On loop, 24th-28 July, 10am-8pm
While I personally would consider a ten hour marathon of our short Super-8 musical to be reward in itself, the Institute's Office of Certification, Incentives and Coercion have created a limited edition carbon-derivative certificate to be awarded to each of the first 250 festival-goers who provide evidence that they have spent an entire day watching the film, at the venue on the banks of Lake Winnipeg. At my insistence, the OCIC have allowed for this to include a fifteen minute lunch break, to be taken in installments only during periods when the credits are rolling. All claims to be sent to the usual address.
Right-click save to download the festival brochure (pdf)
Saturday, 18 July 2009
The tests continue during the more rigorously dogmatic performances, 13 of them, that take place simultaneously for the remainder of the four hour show. My companion unintentionally breaks the rules by getting close to a boy pressing himself to the floor and being sad with an iPod. This behaviour is clarified by Amanda Coogan's turn, in which she repeatedly climbs half-naked up the stairs to think for a while, then with dignity toss herself from her perch to a "mountainous mound" below. The challenge is clearly set: which one is the more upset?
Into the next room, and here is the man who has taken all the shoes. No! Half the shoes. The other half are where you left them. Subsequent debate reveals a divide in olfactory appreciation of the performance. Were the pigs heads real? No they weren't, I didn't smell them; yes they were, I smelt them. We will return to see whether or not the shoe-hatted twig man has moved or not, though either eventuality would be disappointing.
Eunhye Hwang's orchestration of four transistor radios, variously between her armpits or legs or those of the audience, works, and no-one knows why. Perhaps the faux-naivety of the giant 80s specs or the willingness to both feed and be fed jelly by us animals conveyed a generosity that inspired trust and receptivity. Absurd bird dancing may be just what we do in life, when you think about it, in the same way that crawling on the floor or rolling our Sisyphian selves upstairs and off institutional precipices may be just what we do in life, when you think about it, but Hwang's conviction is mainlined through instinctive, improvised relationships. On the other hand, it matters more that the habitual art of the competing miserables is always going on, even when you are elsewhere. Returning later to see what Hwang is up to now, we find Garth Williams (among other animals, targeted with intense arbitrarity) of the Institute's It's Nick's Birthday cast has been handed a transistor. He will later suggest the jelly was apple.
It is Williams, too, who suggests the lack of male nudity versus the lots of female nudity may be down to the inconsistency - and unpredictability - of the male organ over a four hour period. There would be no guarantee that all the participants would have a fair go.
In the basement, the man smashing a rock or something on some metal or something or vice versa is definitely the most saddest artist so far. He is audible from the staircase down which (rather than off which) another nudie lady falls slow-motionly. I wonder what will happen if she reaches the foot of the stairs before the four hours are up? "Only a fool looks at the staircase when there is a bare bottom on show." A fool or a well-brought up boy from Surrey.
The wolf in sheep's in bear's in woman's in wolf's clothing is fully explained in the programme so nobody is daft enough to participate. But the paranoia starts pulsing on arrival at the disembodied mouth of Vitaly Titov. Has the artist invented the moment in Russian medical history here recreated, in which the victim of a factory mishap was kept alive for 20 days as nothing more than a head? Or has he fallen foul of, or paid tribute to the Soviet state's notoriously imaginative way of lying about its scientific breakthroughs? Is the artist an artist at all, or just a man? Possibly a Soviet plant? Is the set, complete with antiquated hand-washing basin and "glory hole" through which participants are variously requested to feed or apply lipstick to Titov's disembodied mouth really here, or is it all done with mirrors? Are mirrors a genuine phemonenon, or is what I have come to think of as mirrors in fact just a continuum of of hard-working lookey-likeys?
After a pub debrief, I return to find my bicycle has been locked in the grounds of the Whitworth Art Gallery. Manchester's queer vegan poet and I proceed to unlock it through the gaps in the railing and are able, with mutual co-operation, to lift the contraption to freedom. A frenzied flurry of activity taken to satisfy fleeting subjective needs framed by an uncaring institutionalised urban space performed for the passive consumption of the UK's excessive surveillance network - just what we do in life, really, when you think about it.
Wednesday, 24 June 2009
Pop up yer tent and take some drugs - it's Glaston-Ferret weekend at the Mad Ferret in Preston, with the full Festival package: "turfed pub, live bands, barbeque and real scrumpy (and the outdoor area’s roofed so you don’t need to worry about the British weather)". Our short Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom will be playing as part of The Best Of Cinematopia on Friday evening. Tents and drugs are not allowed.
WHAT: Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom @ Glaston-Ferret
EVENT: The Best Of Cinematopia Outdoor Film Screening
WHERE: Mad Ferret, 55 Fylde Road, Preston, PR1 2TQ
WHEN: This FRIDAY 26th June from 7pm
Wednesday, 17 June 2009
"The Videotheque helps industry professionals make the most efficient use of their time at the Festival, and is used by sales agents, distributors, producers, acquisition executives, talent agents, exhibitors and festival programmers, with priority access given to buyers."
The official Institute line is: mug a suit and watch our film with his pass.
Wednesday, 6 May 2009
EVENT: SI_11 (Rencontres internationales)
WHERE: L’amphithéâtre, ENSA Bourges (école nationale supérieure d’art), 7 rue Édouard-Branly, F-18000 Bourges
WHEN: This SATURDAY, 9th May between 2pm and 8pm
Please check their programme for details.
The film features in their dynamically unwieldy cyber-catalogue of the future on p.144.
Tuesday, 5 May 2009
It's Nick's Birthday received a Special Mention from the Jury at the 6th IndieLisboa International Independent Film Festival, at the awards ceremony last Saturday night.
Barely more than a greyish-brown speck in the massive auditorium of Lisbon's art deco Cinema São Jorge, our representative Mr Cole made his way up on stage to collect the menção honrosa in the style of the film - stumbling, flickering and slightly out of tune with himself.
The full list of awards is available for perusal here.
Friday, 24 April 2009
Feeling rather marvellous, we were ushered inside by our genial hosts - Messrs. Boyce and Jensen of the Hull Film organisation - where the Importance Of The Medium program began with Eva Weber's ethereal documentary on cranes and their drivers. Following a break for nachos and cigarettes, the moment came for It's Nick's Birthday to be unveiled to the public - a lunchbreak public 20-strong and united in festival spirit. The homemade and accident-happy ethos of the film was channelled into the atmosphere of the room through the guitar amp sound system and reinforced by the phlegmatic purr and splutter of the coffee machine and obsessive brush-strokes of the hot chilli-oriented hung paintings. Afterwards, Mr Brown and I were interviewed to video by Boyce's people, a process that could have been torturous had the sun and the breeze and the people (and the bellyful of punch) not been configured so divinely, and which was all the same makey of pitsweat.
For weeks in advance, we had awaited with childlike anticipation our trip to Hull's Glimmer short film festival, so it was perhaps inevitable the hit-rate of our daydream-embellished expectations would be at best off-centre, if never off-target. Having been tipped that Hull would smell of death (it did a bit) and planned in mouthwatering detail the fish and chips we would acquire for our midnight train journey back to Manchester (we didn't feel like eating after an unsettling aperitif of top-drawer David Firth animations), we met reality half-way on discovering that Hull wasn't in fact a coastal port and the big bit of water by it was (to quote Mr Brown) "merely an estuary". We had promised ourselves we'd see the sea, and the see the sea we would: Mr Brown, and myself, and a young lady from Australia whose acquaintance we made over sangria at Sambrini's, stared out at the glistening brown Humber, alone and together, imagining it to be the ocean for the best part of forty minutes. Although we stood in silence, the synchronised remapping (more accurately re-demapping) of three neural networks (one of which was Australian) was felt to be an adequate riposte to the tyranny of fluvial geography. (Mooring fees in the area have not been affected).
Tuesday, 21 April 2009
EVENT: The Importance Of The Medium 1
WHEN: This WEDNESDAY, 22nd April, 12 noon – 1pm
WHERE: Sabrini's Café, Princes Avenue, Hull, HU5 3QX
WHAT: It’s Nick’s Birthday @ IndieLisboa ’09 International Festival of Independent Cinema
EVENT: International Short Competition 4
WHEN: This SUNDAY, 26th April, 9.30pm
& THURSDAY, 30th April 6.45pm
WHERE: Cinema São Jorge, Screening Room 3
COST: Around 3,50 € (click for concessions/groups)
Monday, 20 April 2009
It’s Nick’s Birthday
UK, 2009, Super-8mm (digital transfer for exhibition), 35 minutes
Music by Aidan Smith :: Written & Directed by Graeme Cole
Capturing the unconventional handcrafted aesthetic of Aidan Smith’s songs, this is a musical for those who wouldn’t normally go near one. The dancing creaks and the vocals strain when four ordinary folk attempt to impose meaning and colour on their mundane and aimless lives. Sundays don’t come with a three-act structure, and we don’t have hidden reserves of magical talent: we have mood swings, private theories and temporary epiphanies.
The film was shot in early 2007 and has been waiting patiently for release while the post-production crew’s intense sleeping schedule and neurotic imperfectionism weaved their influence into the finished artefact. It’s Nick’s Birthday will receive its public premiere in Hull (home town of Nicholas D. Hill – the aeroplane enthusiast, misfit and L’Institute Zoom bit-part player who inspired the title character) this Wednesday 22nd April.
Next stop on the It’s Nick’s Birthday mini-tour of European ports is Lisbon, where the film will have its International Premiere next Sunday, and a further screening on Thursday 30th.