South Side Projections migrates to Pilsen this weekend

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From Philip Stapps Boundary Lines
  • From Philip Stapp's Boundary Lines
On Friday at 7 PM South Side Projections, the local organization that screens culturally and politically engaging movies in south-of-the-Loop locations, will present three short works on the theme of immigration at Calles y Sueños-Chicago, an arts hub located at 1900 S. Carpenter in Pilsen. The most famous piece on the program is Atlantiques, a 15-minute experimental work by Mati Diop, the star of Claire Denis's 35 Shots of Rum and the upcoming Simon Killer. Diop's more recent directorial work Big in Vietnam screened this year's Onion City Film Festival; Atlantiques is thematically similar to that piece, addressing the experience of Africans living abroad.

Also screening is a 1945 short called Boundary Lines, which sounds like a fascinating rediscovery. Its director, Philip Stapp (1908-2003), was a multimedia artist who first received attention for his avant-garde furniture designs and then as a set designer for Martha Graham. Between the 1940s and 1970s he often dabbled in animation (his most famous achievement in the medium may be his work on the 1953 cartoon version of Animal Farm), and in the 1950s he was recruited by the Marshall Plan-funded Economic Cooperation Administration to train young animators in Paris. According to the program notes, Boundary Lines was financed directly by the Marshall Plan too.

The longest work on Friday's program is Norte y Sur, an hourlong piece by local artist Luis Sanchez Ramirez, who will be in attendance for a postfilm discussion. Ramirez first presented the work—a "patchwork of [different] forms of representation," according to his website—as a three-channel video installation. It deals with identity issues experienced by Mexican immigrants living in the United States.

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