In terms of understanding the very nature of our world, it’s hard to overestimate the significance of the Large Hadron Collider, and a new documentary makes a very convincing case.
Kung Fu Grandma, a new short documentary by London-based director Jeong-One Park, explores a group of elderly Kenyan women who have studied kung fu to protect themselves from rapists.
Stereoscopic, or 3D, vision is a technique usually associated these days with blockbuster movies. But, using a simple stereo camera, Carlton Bright rollerbladed around Williamsburg from 2003 to 2013 documenting a series of “modules” or “vignettes” about the neighborhood he loves and calls home.
CINCINNATI — Tim Jenison is an imaging software engineer who talks like Oracle founder Larry Ellison but looks like artist Chuck Close. Jenison believes he has solved one of the greatest mysteries in art: how did 17th-century Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer paint so photo-realistically 150 years before the invention of photography?
In 1965–66, Indonesia’s military set off a killing spree. A new documentary film, The Act of Killing, has begun to illuminate the events in an unprecedented way.
The NSA surveillance scandal has, in a short term, made a lot of people feel depressed and/or worried about the state of governance in America. This is both good and bad for Jeremy Scahill’s new documentary, Dirty Wars, which is directed by Richard Rowley and is also the title of a simultaneously released book by Scahill. Good because it casts all of the revelations in the movie in a now easily believable light. Bad because most people don’t want to spend their Friday nights falling even deeper into depression, and that’s what the film will do. Currently playing in select theaters across the country, Dirty Wars will wring you of whatever wide-eyed, wholehearted faith you may have had left in President Obama.
LOS ANGELES – Too many documentaries on architecture feature the same faces, and they’re mostly male. Same goes for panel discussions, lectures, and exhibits. The new documentary Coast Modern does a better job, yet there’s still far to go.
CINCINNATI — The trending wardrobe of choice for aspiring female protest artists consists of Day-Glo leotards and matching ski masks. Credit the young punk rock performers known as Pussy Riot, feminist activists who led late 2011 civilian protests in Moscow following Vladimir Putin’s controversial reelection as Russia’s president.
Film, like writing, is split categorically between “fiction” and “nonfiction.” This nomenclatural divide most likely stems from a perceived obligation to the audience on the part of nonfiction — the title conveys a promise of vérité. Stories We Tell, the new documentary from Sarah Polley (Away from Her , Take This Waltz ), successfully asserts that there is no objective truth to be found anywhere in “nonfiction.” Polley isn’t the first documentarian to upend audience expectations of reality, but Stories We Tell needs no novelty to succeed; it is a beautiful film.
In an email, a friend of mine mentioned a show taking place at the Kitchen next week: The Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller, created by the filmmaker Sam Green, with live music by indie rockers Yo La Tengo. The subject matter seemed like solid geeky/arty fare, but what stood out to me in the event description was the phrase “live documentary,” in quotes. Given the subject matter and the indie music, the first thing to come to mind when guessing what that might mean were the live, touring shows created in the past couple of years by the public radio programs RadioLab and This American Life. Then again, it was being presented at the Kitchen, a venue that has a history of presenting fairly aggressive work spanning visual, performance, and literary arts.
“When I paint, I feel happy, so it’s a good way to start my mornings, to just paint on something, and what better place than my face?” says Inocente Izucar in the Oscar-nominated documentary short Inocente, which follows the life of the 15-year-old artist. Each day she coils curls of vibrant colors with delicate accents around her eyes, and her paintings are equally vibrant with their richly colored abstract forms and playful creatures. Yet Inocente’s life is anything but, as the undocumented teenager has spent the majority of her life homeless or in shelters with her mom and two younger brothers.
Bruce Sterling might be the most influential art writer you’ve never heard of. The sci-fi novelist and cultural commentator is extremely active in the world of new media and creative coding, writing about artists who work with technology as a medium. A new video interview, part of artist James George and documentarian Jonathan Minard’s CLOUDS documentary, shows Sterling explaining why he’s so passionate about code-based work.