Symposium Participants

Kevin T. Allen is a filmmaker, sound artist, and independent radio producer. His films have screened at venues such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Margaret Mead Film & Video Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Flaherty NYC, and Ethnographic Terminalia, and his sound work has featured on public radio and exhibited at places such as Studio-X NYC and the Third Coast International Audio Festival. Kevin earned his MFA from Hunter College’s Integrated Media Arts Program and an MA from the New School. Kevin teaches documentary production and film form at the New School and is at work on an asynchronous exploration of glass making.

David Barker is an editor, writer and director. He recently collaborated as co­writer and editor on Josephine Decker’s Thou Was Mild and Lovely (co­writer and editor), which was named to the 10 Best Films of 2014 in The New Yorker, and as contributing writer and editor on Olmo and the Seagull by Petra Costa and Lea Glob (‘Best Film’ in the Nordic competition at CPH:DOX). As director, his 2009 thriller Daylight was the ‘Critic’s Pick’ in both The New York Times and The New York Post on its release. He is currently collaborating with Pacho Velez as editor on The Reagan Years. David holds a BA in anthropology and philosophy from the University of Chicago and an MFA from the University of California, San Diego, and has taught at Brown University, Bard College, and The University of Texas at Austin, among other institutions.

Roger Beebe has screened his films around the globe at such unlikely venues as the CBS Jumbotron in Times Square and McMurdo Station in Antarctica as well as more likely ones including Sundance and the Museum of Modern Art with solo shows at Anthology Film Archives, The Laboratorio Arte Alameda in Mexico City, and Los Angeles Filmforum among many other venues.  Beebe is also a film programmer:  he ran Flicker, a festival of small-gauge film in Chapel Hill, NC, from 1997-2000 and was the founder and Artistic Director of FLEX, the Florida Experimental Film Festival from 2004-2014.  He is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Art at the Ohio State University.

Abigail Child has been at the forefront of experimental media and writing since the 1980s, having completed more than thirty film/video works and installations, and written 6 books, five of poetry and one of criticism. An acknowledged pioneer in montage, Child addresses the interplay between sound and image, to make, in the words of LA Weekly: “brilliant exciting work…a vibrant political filmmaking that’s attentive to form.” Winner of the Rome Prize,  Radcliffe Institute, Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellowships, as well as participating in two Whitney Biennials, (1989, 1997), Child has had numerous retrospectives worldwide. Harvard University Cinematheque has created an “Abigail Child Collection” which will preserve and exhibit her art. She is currently Senior Faculty at the SMFA, Boston; her studio in NYC.

Maile Colbert is an intermedia artist with a concentration on sound and video living and working between New York and Lisbon, Portugal, and teaching at Faculdade de Belas Artes da Universidade do Porto. She holds a BFA in The Studio for Interrelated Media from Massachusetts College of Art, an MFA in Integrated Media/Film and Video from the California Institute of the Arts, and is currently a Doctoral candidate in the Estudos Artísticos program in the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences at the Universidade NOVA de Lisboa. She has had multiple screenings and exhibits, and has performed and screened widely in Japan, Europe, Mexico, and the States. She has designed sound and composed for such works as Irene Lusztig’s feature documentary The Motherhood Archives, Rebecca Baron’s film How Little We Know of Our Neighbors, Adele Horne’s feature documentary The Tailenders, Allan Sekula’s epic The Lottery of the Sea, and Jenny Perlin’s and Jackie Goss’ performative documentary project The Measures.  She spent the last four years collaborating with the organization Binaural/Nodar, and is an ongoing contributor of articles on soundscape ecology and sound studies at “Sounding Out”, the award winning sound journal.

Marit Kathryn Corneil is Assistant Professor at the Department of Art and Media Studies at the University of Trondheim (NTNU) in Norway, where she teaches film studies, and film and video production. Main research area: documentary studies and digital media. Recent publications include: articles in the film journal WUXIA, book chapters in Hvor Går Dokumentaren? (2014) eds. H. Bastiansen and P. Aam, Handbook of Participatory Video (2012) eds. Milne, Mitchell, de Lange, Beyond the Visual (2010) eds. Iversen and Simonsen, and Challenge for Change: Activist Documentary at the National Film Board of Canada (2010) eds. Waugh, Winton and Baker.

Inspired by the traditional painting genres of portraiture and landscape, Andrew Demirjian’s sound and media work explores relationships between psychology and environment using contemporary technology, like surveillance, motion tracking and data gathering. The pieces take the form of interactive installations, single-channel videos, generative poems and audiovisual performance.His work has been exhibited at The Museum of the Moving Image, Eyebeam, Rush Arts, White Box gallery and many institutions internationally. Andrew’s work was been recognized and supported by the MacDowell Colony, the Puffin Foundation, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Artslink, Harvestworks, LMCC Swing Space and The Clocktower Gallery.

Melissa Dubbin and Aaron S. Davidson have co-authored a body of works producing forms, objects, images and experiences, equally incorporating the mediums of photography, video, sound, performance, installation, sculpture and artists books since they began working together in 1998. Their work has been exhibited internationally at museums, galleries, and art centers and is currently on view in Co-Workers: Beyond Disaster at Bétonsalon, Paris. Melissa Dubbin is a graduate of the Masters Program of Experimentation in Art and Politics (SPEAP) at SciencesPo, Paris, founded & directed by Bruno Latour, where she was a fellow from 2013-2014. Dubbin also holds a BA in Moving Image Arts from the College of Santa Fe. Aaron S. Davidson is a graduate of the MFA program at the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College. Davidson also holds a BA in Fine Arts from the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque where he studied photography and electronic music. Davidson teaches at the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York in the Foundation Arts Department. Dubbin and Davidson live and work in Brooklyn, New York.

Michael Gitlin makes work about the intricate conceptual and ideological structures that we use to organize our ways of knowing the world. His work has been screened at numerous venues, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Toronto International Film Festival, the Full Frame Documentary Festival, the London Film Festival and the Whitney Biennial Exhibition. His recent project, A Disaster Forever, was in the 2015 New York Film Festival. His 16mm film, The Birdpeople, is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Gitlin was the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2006. His work has also been supported by the Jerome Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Gitlin received an M.F.A. from Bard College. He teaches at Hunter College in New York City.

Leo Goldsmith is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Cinema Studies at New York University, where he is completing a dissertation on found footage and image circulation. He is the co-editor of the film section of The Brooklyn Rail, has written on film and media for art-agenda, Artforum, Cinema Scope, and Reverse Shot, and he is the co-author (with Robert Stam and Richard Porton) of Keywords in Subversive Film/Media Aesthetics (Wiley, 2015). He has organized exhibitions and film series for the Museum of the Moving Image, the Ann Arbor Film Festival, UnionDocs, and the Contemporary Art Centre (Vilnius, Lithuania).

Jacqueline Goss makes movies about scientific systems and how they change the ways we think about ourselves. Recent projects have taken various forms. Her two most recent works are The Observers – a portrait of a weather observatory on the windiest mountain in the world and The Measures – an essay film made with Jenny Perlin about the history of the metric system and “invention” of the meter. She currently teaches in the Film and Electronic Arts Department at Bard College.

Jen Heuson is an award-winning experimental filmmaker and sound ethnographer. Her films have screened internationally at venues as diverse as FLEX Fest, Big Muddy, Black Maria, and the Margaret Mead Film & Video Festival, and she has produced sound ethnographies of the Peruvian Amazon, New York City, and South Dakota’s Black Hills. Jen earned her PhD with distinction from the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University. Her research explores how heritage and tourist experiences are made and managed through sound. Jen is currently working on a film about aural sovereignty and a science-fiction novel exploring stone tape theory in South Dakota.

Ernst Karel makes experimental nonfiction sound works for multichannel installation and performance.  His recent projects are edited/composed using unprocessed location recordings; in performance he sometimes combines these with analog electronics to create pieces which move between the abstract and the documentary. Recent sound projections have included Oboro, Montréal; EMPAC, Troy; Arsenal, Berlin; and the 2014 Whitney Biennial.Video and multichannel audio collaborations include Ah humanity! (2015) with Véréna Paravel and Lucien Castaing-Taylor, and Single Stream (2014) with Pawel Wojtasik and Toby Kim Lee.  Vilms for which Karel has edited and mixed sound include The Sky Trembles and the Earth is Afraid and the Two Eyes are Not Brothers (2015),   Detour de Force (2014), The Iron Ministry (2014), Manakamana (2013), Leviathan (2012), People’s Park (2012), Foreign Parts (2010), and Sweetgrass (2009). Albums composed with location recordings are Materials Recovery Facility (2012), Swiss Mountain Transport Systems (2011), and Heard Laboratories (2010). Karel is manager of the Sensory Ethnography Lab at Harvard University, where as Lecturer on Anthropology, he teaches a course in sonic ethnography.

Kelly Kirshtner is a media scholar, visual artist, and sound recordist whose work often explores the back rooms of perceptual systems and production practices. She has written extensively about sound and visual culture, on topics ranging from the microphone’s conceptual positioning in early radio and film to essays on sonic resistance in performance and public space. Her video and sound works also examine the shifting spaces of acoustic presence, and have been exhibited and screened nationally and internationally. A graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (MFA) and the University of California, Irvine (PhD), Kelly is currently Assistant Professor of Film/Video at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she teaches courses in sound design, film sound history and aesthetics, field recording, and audio post-production.

Irina Leimbacher is Assistant Professor of Film Studies at Keene State College, New Hampshire as well as an occasional writer for Film Comment and a curator of experimental and non-fiction film, formerly at San Francisco Cinematheque. Her current research focuses on the construction of testimony in film. She has published book chapters on the experimental essay film and the work of Robert Gardner, and has participated on panels at the Society for Cinema and Media Studies, Visible Evidence, the Society for Visual Anthropology, the International Experimental Media Congress in Toronto, and the Berlin Film Festival.

Jason Livingston is a film and video maker currently based in Iowa City, IA, working with the Department of Cinematic Arts at the University of Iowa. A teacher, occasional programmer, and a lover of movies avant as well as mall-tastic, he has worked with many non-profits, including Cornell Cinema, the Experimental TV Center, the Standby Program, the Flaherty Seminar, and others.  His work has screened widely; recent screenings include shows at the Echo Park Film Center in Los Angeles and UnionDocs in Brooklyn.

Irene Lusztig is a filmmaker, visual artist and archival researcher. Often beginning with rigorous research in archives, her work brings historical materials into conversation with the present day, inviting the viewer to explore historical spaces as a way of contemplating larger questions of politics, ideology, and the production of personal, collective, and national memories. Her work has been screened around the world, including at MoMA, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Anthology Film Archives, Pacific Film Archive, IDFA Amsterdam, and on television in the US, Europe, and Taiwan. She teaches filmmaking at UC Santa Cruz where she is Associate Professor of Film and Digital Media.

Jenny Perlin’s work ranges from 16mm film for installation and theatrical presentation to video, drawings, and texts. Perlin received her BA from Brown University in Literature and Society, her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Film, and postgraduate studies at the Whitney Independent Study Program, New York. Her work has been shown at numerous venues including the Guggenheim New York; Mass MoCA; MoMA, The Kitchen, the Drawing Center, The Folkwang Museum, Essen, Guangzhou Triennial, China, the Berlin, Rotterdam, and New York film festivals. Support has come from the LEF Foundation, NYSCA, Experimental Television Center, CEC Artslink, American Center, Geneva, and the Arnold Foundation. Commissions have come from Bard CCS, the Aldrich Museum, BAC Geneva, The Queens Museum, and Expo 02, Switzerland. Perlin’s work is represented by Simon Preston Gallery, New York. She teaches at The Cooper Union and at The New School in Manhattan and lives in Brooklyn.

Melissa Ragona is an Associate Professor of Critical Theory and Art History in the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University. Her book, Readymade Sound: Andy Warhol’s Recording Aesthetics, is forthcoming from University of California Press, Berkeley and her essays and reviews have appeared in October, Frieze, Art Papers and in the edited collections Women’s Experimental Cinema (2007), Lowering the Boom: Critical Studies in Film Sound (2008), Andy Warhol Live (2008), and Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image (2013). She has also published in monographs on the work of artists, Heike Mutter, Ulrich Genth, Christian Jankowski, Carolee Schneemann, Paul Sharits, and Antoine Catala.

Pooja Rangan is Assistant Professor of English in Film and Media Studies at Amherst College, and was previously Assistant Professor of Culture and Media at The New School from 2011-2015. Rangan’s first book, Immediations (Duke University Press, forthcoming 2017) examines the humanitarian impulse in documentary, with a special focus on questions of childhood, animality, ethnicity, and disability. Her writing has been published in differences, Camera Obscura, Film Quarterly, Feminist Media Histories, South Asian Popular Culture, World Picture, and other anthologies and journals. Rangan also serves on the board of the Flaherty Film Seminar.

Priyanjali Sen is a Ph.D. candidate and Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Cinema Studies at Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. She has a B.A. in English from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University and double M.A. degrees from MCRC Jamia Millia Islamia University and NYU. Her current work focuses on the role of early twentieth century Bengali literary culture in shaping and defining post-independence Bengali cinema (1947-67), which includes the formulation of a literary poetics based on elements such as dialogue, poetry and lyrics. Her research interests include documentary and avant-garde film practices, in particular the essay-film and its image/sound dynamics.

Interested and informed by an array of artistic forms, Kaija Siirala has worked in video, sound and performance for the past seven years. Before moving to New York to pursue her MFA in Integrated Media Arts at Hunter College, she was with the documentary project Envisioning Global LGBT Human Rights both as a picture editor and workshop facilitator.  A keen collaborator, she has explored live video mixing in a number of performance contexts while independently experimenting with sound recording and video to create her own work. Recently, Hansu Solo, a documentary short created with Emily Collins was awarded a 2015 student grant from the National Board of Review.

Deborah Stratman is a Chicago-based artist and filmmaker interested in landscapes and systems. Much of her work points to the relationships between physical environments and human struggles for power and control that play out on the land. Recent projects have addressed freedom, expansionism, surveillance, sonic warfare, public speech, ghosts, sinkholes, levitation, propagation, orthoptera, raptors, comets and faith. She has exhibited internationally at venues including MoMA NY, Centre Pompidou, Hammer Museum, Mercer Union, Witte de With, the Whitney Biennial and festivals including Sundance, Viennale, CPH/DOX, Oberhausen, Ann Arbor, Full Frame and Rotterdam. Stratman is the recipient of Fulbright and Guggenheim fellowships, a Creative Capital grant and an Alpert Award. She teaches at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Mark Street graduated from Bard College (B.A, 1986) and the San Francisco Art Institute (MFA 1992). He has shown work in the New York Museum of Modern Art Cineprobe series (1991, 1994), at Anthology Film Archives (1993, 2006, 2009), Millennium (1990,1996), and the San Francisco Cinematheque (1986, 1992, 2009). His work has appeared at the Tribeca (5 times), Sundance, Rotterdam, New York, London, San Francisco, New York Underground, Sarajevo, Viennale, Ourense (Spain), Mill Valley, South by Southwest, and other film festivals.

Jim Supanick is a videomaker and writer born in Cleveland, Ohio. His essays on the moving image have appeared in Film Comment, Millennium Film Journal, The Wire, Cineaste, and The Brooklyn Rail. Forthcoming videos include Seed Sold Back to the Farmer, a two-part animated essay about Taylorism and its legacy. He has received support from NYSCA and the Experimental Television Center, and is the recipient of a Creative Capital Arts Writers Grant and a NYFA Grant for Nonfiction Literature. Jim currently teaches at City College, and is a PhD candidate at the European Graduate School, currently writing a dissertation on the laboratory investigation of nonhuman animal sensoria.

Asbjørn Tiller, PhD. is an Associate Professor at the Department of Art and Media Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, Norway. Tiller teaches media studies, film studies and practical video production. His main research area lies within the use of sound in different audiovisual expressions, mainly in film and art installations. Tillers PhD thesis focused on spatial experience in experimental sound installations and audiovisual expressions. He also has a background in practical sound production in music and film.

Pacho Velez works at the intersection of ethnography, contemporary art, and political documentary. His current project, The Reagan Years, explores a popular actor’s defining role: Leader of the Free World. Told entirely through a largely ­unseen trove of archival footage, the film captures the pageantry, pathos, and charisma that followed the 40th President from Hollywood to the nation’s capital. His last film, Manakamana (co­directed with Stephanie Spray) won a Golden Leopard at the Locarno Film Festival. It played around the world, including at the Whitney Biennial and the Toronto International Film Festival. In 2010, Pacho completed his MFA at CalArts. He has taught at Harvard University, Bard College, Parsons the New School, and MassArt. In 2015, he was awarded a Princeton Arts Fellowship.