Tehran-born, Brooklyn-based artist Raha Raissnia presents an evening of her expanded cinema work. Raissnia works in film, painting, and drawing, with each medium informing the other. Her film works are the result of an iterative approach: footage shot on Super-8, 16mm, digital, and even mobile phone is manipulated in the studio; Raissnia projects the footage onto paintings and screens, integrating found materials and additional film and digital imagery, and refilms the whole to yield densely layered celluloid films. These films, in turn, are often screened superimposed with handmade slides or fashioned into film loops that Raissnia manually manipulates on projectors, which take on the role of instruments. One recent body of work, derived from video recordings of East Harlem street scenes, oscillates between keenly observed portraits, by turn stoic and vibrant, and the sublime nature abstracted images achieve through texture and rhythm. Raissnia will present one of these recent pieces, Litany, with live sound from collaborator Panagiotis Mavridis’s handmade instruments. Other works to be screened include Animism, with live sound by electronic musician and composer Aki Onda; Chaleh Harz; and Free Way (Part 1), with analog tape loops recorded for this presentation by renowned cellist Charles Curtis. These works, which span the past 10 years of Raissnia's career, will be shown together in a single program for the first time. A discussion with the artist and collaborators Mavridis and Onda follows.
The Museum of Modern Art, Floor T2, Theater 2