The Essential Shorts, Part 2
Monday, January 7, 2013, 7:30 p.m.
Theater 1 (The Roy and Niuta Titus Theater 1), T1
Rehearsals for Extinct Anatomies
1987. Great Britain. Inspired loosely by the London Underground, this elliptical short is notable for the nuance and texture of its black-and-white images. Tracking shots reveal mysterious worlds where human-like puppets languish in a sickroom, wiry creatures quiver frenetically, and swirls of calligraphy travel across recessed chambers. 14 min.
1979. Great Britain. The first film produced under the auspices of the Quays’ Konnick Studios follows a man’s wanderings through the cobblestone streets of an unnamed city in the dark of night. A moment in which the puppet’s hand gropes the shadowy darkness sets the tone for the Quays’ strange poetry and mastery of creating oneiric spaces. 21 min.
1989. Great Britain/USA. In an eerie landscape, devotional icons teeter amidst rising waters and dark clouds. This station break for MTV was a response to the channel’s “Free Your Mind” theme. 1 min.
This Unnameable Little Broom: Epic of Gilgamesh
1985. Great Britain. In this pilot for a larger unrealized Gilgamesh project, the legend’s eponymous despot patrols his box-like kingdom on a tricycle and lures Enkidu from the wild forest with an erotic contraption that references Marcel Duchamp’s bachelor machines. 11 min.
Maska (The Mask)
2010. Poland. Based on a Stanislaw Lem story, the film’s voiceover narration recounts the inner turmoil of an android assassin who falls in love with her target. Awakened to both her mission and her feminine individuality, the heroine is caught between desire and destiny. Eerie and chilling, the film demonstrates the twins’ lifetime engagement with Polish literature and culture, and their continuing formal innovation. 23 min.
Bartók Béla: Sonata for Solo Violin
2011. Great Britain. This site-specific film for the Manchester International Festival was created to accompany a concert of the Hungarian composer’s music at the historic 19th-century Chethams School of Music. The Quays’ enchanting images of dusty interiors, open coffins, and pens stopped on manuscripts alternate with Alina Ibragimova’s performance. 27 min.
Program 97 min.
In the Film exhibition Lip-Reading Puppets: The Curators’ Prescription for Deciphering the Quay Brothers
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