The Unseen Festival 2018: Work/Prints: Taylor Dunne and Eric Stewert. Sunday, September 23, 5pm

T H E  U N S E E N  F E S T I V A L  2018

Taylor Dunne and Eric Stewart

Join us on Sunday, September 23, 5pm, at University of Colorado, Boulder, CASE Building, NEST Studio for the Arts for night 23 of the Unseen Festival. We will screen work by Taylor Dunne and Eric Stewart.

What does a people’s history of Nuclear Weapons look like? Through popular books and government records the Manhattan Project is remembered as a triumph of scientific innovation. This institutional memory fetishizes the novelty of nuclear fission while ignoring the communities and ecosystems that continue to be exposed to radiation and industrial contamination. For the past four years Taylor Dunne and Eric Stewart have been profiling communities and activists impacted by the nuclear weapons industry. Their project, Off Country, interrogates the institutional racism of the nuclear weapons industry and uses oral history to articulate how the creation of “National Sacrifice Zones” has disproportionately affected native, Hispanic and Anglo-ranching communities throughout the Southwest. The filmmakers will share short films that led them to this project along with a preview of them in-production feature Off Country. They will facilitate a conversation about their approach to oral history and how experimental cinema and documentary can be used to augment, resist and subvert the institutional memory of the nuclear weapons industry.

Off Country (work-in-progress excerpt)Taylor Dunne & Eric Stewart – USA – 2019

Super 16mm transferred to 2k Video

Off Country is a feature film and multimedia project that examines three regions in the west: the former Rocky Flats Plant, the White Sands Missile Range and the Nevada Test Site. Off Country investigates the environmental consequences of the nuclear weapons industry as well as racist and classist policies inherent in the storage, mining, and production of radioactive material.

Obar (excerpt) Taylor Dunne – USA – 2008

Obar is a portrait of a New Mexico ghost town; ghost stories of water dowsing and train hopping provide living insight into the towns possibilities and failures, while animated images of landscape and sky convey an eerie portrait of life on the wild frontier.

Katah-din (excerpt) Taylor Dunne – USA – 2014

The people who, for centuries, have lived in what is now Maine are called the Wabanaki, an Eastern Algonquin word meaning people of the dawn. Called this because they live where the sun first strikes the continent at the peak of Katahdin. This place was home to a Wabanaki woman born into the Penobscot tribe named Molly Spotted Elk. Molly was a doorway between worlds; she was the first Wabanaki person to formally record the creation history of her people in her book, Katah-din: Wigwam Tales of the Wabanaki Tribe; while simultaneously performing the American Indian stereotype at nightclubs in New York, Paris; and most notably starred as Neewaa in H.P. Carver’s 1930 film The Silent Enemy.

The history and memory retained in the Katahdin landscape is revealed through Molly’s archive, amateur film, found sound, and contemporary observation. The figure of Molly is used as a lens to examine the process of erasure, restoring to American history something that has been lost but hidden in plain sight.

HarbourEric Stewart – UK/USA – 2016

Harbour is a 16mm film focusing on the English Fascination with the Pacific Northwest. It evaluates ecological simulation and historic recreation to find in Landscape a stage for the enactment of the Other. In the 19th century English aristocrats where especially fascinated with the large evergreens of the Pacific Coast. Entrepreneurs and naturalists began importing spectacular trees, such as the California Redwood, throughout the United Kingdom. This importation of fauna was part of a circuit of appropriation through recreation; where the English simulated, in garden and greenhouse, the ecology of colonial landholdings while exporting English culture and architecture to said colonial locales.

MAYDAYEric Stewart – USA – 2012

A march down Market St. with the ultimate aim of liberating a vacant building.

Helios, Eric Stewart (USA, 2018, 5 min, 16mm)

Time-lapses of cacti and succulent over the course of a year. Environmental data drives the tone and filtration of the sounds while the rising and setting of the sun illuminates plant growth in and out phase with each other.

Taylor Dunne is a filmmaker, curator and university lecturer based in Colorado’s San Luis Valley and the Catskill Mountains of New York State.  She has an affinity for photographic processes, amateur film, the personal archive and the history of the cinematic apparatus. Her work strives to make visible underrepresented histories, and to inspire citizens to participate in shaping future trends in cultural representation. Her works have been exhibited at venues that include; the New York Film Festival, the Tribeca Film Festival, Crossroads Film and Video Festival (San Francisco), FOL: Experimental Film Society (Istanbul), EXDOC (Paris) and The Deluge Center for Contemporary Art (Victoria, BC). She has curated film screenings for The Black Cube Artist Program, Experiments in Cinema Film Festival (Albuquerque) and The Brakhage Center. Recently she co-curated Mountain Time: Films the Interior of North America, a program of artist-made films and toured with them at micro-cinemas across Europe. She holds a BA from The New School and an MFA from The University of Colorado at Boulder. Currently she is an Assistant Professor in the Communication and Media Studies Department at SUNY Cortland.

Eric Stewart is an interdisciplinary multimedia artist and educator. Working predominantly with 16mm film his artistic practice invokes photochemical and darkroom processes to investigate landscape, place and cultural identity in the American West.  He was awarded the 2015 Mono No Aware Award for Excellence in Filmmaking at the Haverhill Experimental Film Festival and his films have shown at: The Yerba Buena Center for Fine Arts (SF), Yale University,  Crossroads Film Festival (SF Cinematheque), 25fps (Zagreb) and The Florida Experimental Film Festival.  He holds a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, an MFA from the University of Colorado, Boulder and is currently an Assistant Professor of Photography at Adams State University in the beautiful San Luis Valley of Southern Colorado.

Nature, Environment, Science & Technology (NEST) Studio for the Arts is a network of faculty, students, centers and campus units at the University of Colorado Boulder that combine artistic practice and scientific research to explore our common and disparate ways of observing, recording, experimenting and knowing. A series of cross-campus initiatives allow students to directly engage with faculty mentors and inspire alternate modes of communicating with the public.