Introduction
Maya Deren (April 29, 1917 – October 13, 1961), born Eleonora Derenkowska (Ukrainian: Елеоно́ра Деренко́вська), was a Ukrainian-born American filmmaker and one of the most important American experimental filmmakers and entrepreneurial promoters of the avant-garde in the 1940s and 1950s. Deren was also a choreographer, dancer, film theorist, poet, lecturer, writer, and photographer. The function of film, Deren believed, like most art forms, was to create an experience; each one of her films would evoke new conclusions, rendering her oeuvre dynamic and always-evolving. She combined her interests in dance, Haitian Vodou and subjective psychology in a series of surreal, perceptual, black-and-white short films. Using editing, multiple exposures, jump cutting, superimposition, slow-motion, and other camera techniques to her fullest advantage, Deren created continued motion through discontinued space, while abandoning the established notions of physical space and time, with the ability to turn her vision into a stream of consciousness. One of the most influential experimental films in American cinema was Meshes of the Afternoon (1943), her collaboration with Alexander Hammid. She went on to make several films of her own, including At Land (1944), A Study in Choreography for Camera (1945), and Ritual in Transfigured Time (1946), writing, producing, directing, editing, and photographing them with help from only one other person, Hella Heyman, her camerawoman.
Wikidata
Q450382
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