Group 312 at Chicago Filmmakers | Bleader

Group 312 at Chicago Filmmakers


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From Bryan Wyricks 10 Frames (My Dog Ate My Homework)
  • From Bryan Wyrick's 10 Frames (My Dog Ate My Homework)
In the interview I posted the other day, local video artist Nelson Carvajal spoke enthusiastically about what he termed “the democratization of filmmaking, [which is] bringing [things] to the point where everybody can be making art.” For an illustration of that sentiment, head to Andersonville on Friday night, where Chicago Filmmakers will screen recent shorts by the local collaborative Group 312 Films. The group, the Chicago chapter of Group 101 Films, operates according to the dictum that each member must produce a three-to-five minute work every six months. As to be expected, the works vary in terms of quality, but they share a faith in art for art’s sake that seems increasingly practical in the democratic landscape Carvajal described.

Most of the shorts I previewed the other evening were experimental pieces, although a few—Richard Syska and Chris Mann’s sci-fi miniature Snot Inoculum and Kevin Chatham’s Djinn (inspired by an Alain Robbe-Grillet novel)—recalled the “sweded” narrative films of Michel Gondry’s Be Kind Rewind. Others suggested the postcards one might send to a pen pal, conveying brief impressions of home, pet interests, or a friend’s band (there are several underground music videos). After reviewing two generic studio films, I found it reassuring to come home to movies that addressed me like a pen pal rather than an anonymous spectator.

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