California Institute of the Arts was founded in 1961 by Walt Disney to bring the visual and performing arts together under one roof. This exhibition celebrates more than three decades of intimate, inventive, and technically sophisticated student filmmaking and videomaking from CalArts, featuring a breathtaking range of nonfiction, narrative, animation, and experimental styles and genres. Particular focus is given to the famed animation program, where students have used everything from cutting-edge computer and optical printing technologies—many of which they developed themselves—to homespun materials like chewing-gum wrappers and nail polish remover. Luminaries from Pixar, Disney, Laika, and other major animation and effects companies, as well as distinctive independent voices, are represented. Nonfiction and experimental works reveal a sense of political engagement and moral urgency, whether investigating domestic violence, toxic dumping, or the secret histories of 17th-century astronomers, Korean war brides, and African American Kentucky Derby riders. Special evenings are devoted to artists like Ericka Beckman, Ken Feingold, Jack Goldstein, Sharon Greytak, Matt Mullican, Tony Oursler, David Salle, Christopher Williams, and David Wilson, whose conceptual films and Portapack videos of the 1970s and 1980s remain startlingly contemporary and provocative. Many of the artists will be at MoMA to present their work.
Organized by Joshua Siegel, Assistant Curator, Department of Film and Media.
With gratitude to Steve Anker. Thanks also to Thom Andersen, John Baldessari, James Benning, Hartmut Bitomsky, Betzy Bromberg, Margaret Crane, Larry Cuba and the iotaCenter, Susan Davis, Myron Emery, Morgan Fisher, Leo Hobaica, Jr., Rachelle Katz, Cindy Keefer, Mike Kelley, Steven Lavine, Gary Mairs, Kris Malkiewicz, Patty Palmer, Paul Reubens, Bérénice Reynaud, Céline Ruivo, Michael Scroggins, Alan Sekula, Maureen Selwood, Jeffrey Shapiro, Christopher Müller and Galerie Daniel Buchholz, and Mark Toscano and the Academy Film Archive. Dedicated to the memory of Ed Emshwiller, Jules Engel, Alexander Mackendrick, William Moritz, and Nam June Paik.