Curated by Bradford Nordeen and organized in collaboration with DL: Los Angeles.
Dirty Looks founder Bradford Nordeen presents film and video works that celebrate the joyful fluidity found in recent annals of queer history-when gay and lesbian sexualities were not so tidily divided, when hardcore and DIY filmmaking brought together a generation of flamboyant outsiders who drifted from sexuality to sexuality, town to town. Working from punk and queercore archives, the program showcases essential works by G.B. Jones, Greta Snider and Scott Treleaven in addition to unearthing recent finds and lesser-known titles from Rick Castro, Jonesy and Jill Reiter. Nordeen launched Dirty Looks in 2011 as a monthly platform for queer experimental film and video and has brought it to a variety of venues, from film festivals and museums to rooftops and unlikely social spaces in New York and the West Coast. DL: Los Angeles is a series of public events across greater Los Angeles, co-curated with Clara López Menéndez.
In person: Bradford Nordeen, Rick Castro, Jonesy and Jill Reiter
"...fearless artists [who] take nothing for granted and take no prisoners. Expect humor, high art, revelation, intimacy and, best of all, the uncategorizable." - Shana Nys Dambrot, L.A. Weekly
"Bradford Nordeen has brought new meaning to camp, parody and the marginal... He collects queer films that are wild and often overlooked, and has shown work that other people wouldn't dare."
Shot on super 8 for projections at the legendary sex party, Fiend, in 1992, this short B&W silent reel features members of the queercore band Fagbash in solitary erotic exploits. Part portrait and part salacious dare, this never-before-screened work offers an ad hoc glimpse into unapologetic cruising and lust.
Greta Snider: Hard-Core Home Movie
5min., 1989 (16mm)
Hard Core Home Movie is a frank and irreverent documentary that asks the question "what is hard-core?" Seedy, grainy, and fast-paced, this is a nostalgic look at an ephemeral moment in the history of a subculture: punk rock in San Francisco in the late 1980s. Everyone from fucked-up teenagers to elderly Mexican tourists attempt to explain the allure and mystique of the scene. Filmed at SF's historical petting-zoo/theater/punk emporium The Farm.
Jill Reiter: Birthday Party
9min, 1993 (super8 transferred to DV)
"A queer girl's fantasy of the best birthday party a mother could give. Being queer, the 'sweet sixteen' character has only two girlfriends to invite to her party: one is the daughter of Jehovah's Witnesses, the other a precocious slut. The party is depicted primarily in long shots in a 1960s home-movie style. The mother is a hippie (played by a drag queen) who believes in free love, communal living and crazy parties. She has her boyfriend serve cake to the girls and brings in a male dancer and a female sex worker to entertain them." - Chris Straayer
G.B. Jones: The Troublemakers
20min., 1990 (super8 transferred to DV)
The Troublemakers follows the lives of four down-on-their-luck characters. Surrounded by the vestiges of conspicuous consumption, they struggle to survive outside of society, fashioning their own aesthetics of poverty and devising strategies to navigate pervasive surveillance, evading or performing for cameras everywhere.
The Troublemakers is equally fact and fiction, documentary and performance, home movie and narrative - the line is blurred and distinctions become meaningless. Shot in the condemned home of director G.B. Jones and lead actors Caroline Azar and Bruce LaBruce, the total cost of the film was the price of 7 cartridges, 3 minutes in length of Super 8 film.
Scott Treleaven: The Salivation Army
22min., 2001 (Super8 transferred to DV)
A tale of blood, sex, spit, punk & cult recruitment: for three years the Salivation Army operated a counterculture zine aimed at restless queer punk youth. But during their brief existence what began as a small, local gang transformed into an increasingly dangerous cult network. Part confessional, part recruitment drive, this film is at once lush, vicious, erotic and instructional. A cut-and-paste portrait of the underground itself.
Rick Castro: "3. Dr. Chris Teen Sex Surrogate"
(from Three Faces of Women: a feminine trilogy), 20min., 1994 (video)
Fonda LaBruce and Vaginal Davis are a drag queen lesbian couple experiencing bed death. They call in therapist (Dr. Chris Teen - Christine Martin) to help them get out of their sexual rut. The film was shot in uptown Manhattan by Bob Alvarez, the famous 1970s porn director.
Greta Snider: Our Gay Brothers
9 min., 1993 (16mm)
"A collage of found film footage, assembled porn movies, children's instructional film, sports coverage and '50s Hollywood musicals to construct and investigation into gay men's differing attitudes towards the female body. A clever and contentious film." - Melbourne Film Festival
Rick Castro is an independent filmmaker, photographer and curator who has lived in Los Angeles his entire life. His photography has been featured in Art in America, Flaunt, Attitude UK, DNA and Tetu magazines. Castro co-wrote and co-directed the iconic film Hustler White, staring Tony Ward, that premiered at the 1996 Sundance Film Festival, receiving both high praises and scorn from critics. After the French Minister of Culture Jack Lang declared Hustler White a work of art, the film had theatrical screenings worldwide and is now considered a cult classic. It has been preserved by the UCLA Legacy Project and was listed in the top 100 independent films of the 20th century by Los Angeles Times film critic Manohla Dargis. Castro also directed the infamous documentary Plushies & Furries for MTV in 2001. In November 2005, he founded ANTEBELLUM gallery in Hollywood, the only fetish art gallery in America, and perhaps the world.
G.B. Jones was born in Canada and works in film, drawing, design, music and publishing. She has been making movies since 1985 and her work has been exhibited throughout North America, South America, Europe, Israel and Australia. Her most recent movie, The Lollipop Generation, was showcased at the Gala Premiere for The 2008 Images Festival. A retrospective of her earlier work, including The Yo-Yo Gang and The Troublemakers, was held by Women in the Director's Chair Festival in Chicago.
G.B. Jones creates her movies on Super 8 mm film and analogue video utilizing guerrilla film tactics and embracing a no-budget credo she refers to as "The Aesthetics of Poverty," which is as much about formal concerns as it is about the socio-political. As such, her movies have been frequently regarded as forerunners for important cultural movements that have emerged in the past three decades.
Jonesy is an artist and experimental filmmaker from Los Angeles. In the 1990s, he was a member of the seminal homocore band Fagbash. He has shown his animated films at the Oberhausen Film Festival, Outfest LA, Mix NYC, Image+Nation Montreal, Pink Screens Festival in Brussels, Belgium and at Basso in Berlin, Germany.
Bradford Nordeen holds an MA in Cinema Cultures from King's College London and a BFA in Photography and Media from CalArts. The founder of Dirty Looks NYC, a platform for queer experimental film and video, and the site-specific off-shoot series, Dirty Looks: On Location, a month of queer interventions in New York City spaces, Nordeen has organized screenings internationally at venues like Participant Inc, the Museum of Modern Art, The Kitchen, The Hammer Museum, White Columns, Artists Space and Judson Memorial Church, and has programmed for Outfest, MIX NYC and Milwaukee Underground film festivals. His writing has been published in Art In America, The Huffington Post, Afterimage, Lambda Literary, Little Joe and Butt Magazine, among others. He lives in Los Angeles, CA and Brooklyn, NY.
Jill Reiter is a filmmaker whose super 8 and 16mm films captured an ephemeral time in 1990s queer underground subculture. They have shown at the New Museum, The Whitney, The Kitchen & at film festivals in the U.S. and Europe. As an excavationist & curator of visual detritus of the 20th century, she has created subterranean montages that can be seen in large-scale video projections at nightclubs such as SF drag institution Heklina's Oasis, & museums including SFMOMA & Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.
Reiter is currently reconfiguring her experimental 1994 new wave mini-featurette In Search of Margo-go (which stars Kathleen Hanna & other luminaries of the queerpunk/riot grrrl early 90's milieu) to include animation & live performative/musical elements. A work-in-progress screening showed to a sold out crowd at London's Fringe Festival in November 2014.
Greta Snider is an experimental filmmaker. Her earlier work on 16mm includes a collection of audio and visual experiences that combines photography, found footage, and her own experiences of the San Francisco punk scene in the early 1990s. Her work includes experiments with simultaneous soundtracks (Blood Story, 1990), engaging personal accounts of a scraped-together journey with friends (Portland, 1996), and an audio travelogue of the San Francisco punk scene. Her films explore the importance of small memories, retrieving pieces of ephemera from the underground and re-presenting them on screen.
Snider's more recent work includes a series of slide show projections done in collaboration with Johunna Grayso and comprised of hand-processed photographs and stereoscopic images. The series is described as an update on the #campy Viewmaster format#, riffing on the concept of the travelogue to present the unseen and underground aspects.
Scott Treleaven was born in Canada, in 1972. Since first coming to attention in 1996 with his independent publication, This Is the Salivation Army, and his groundbreaking documentary, Queercore, Treleaven's work has been predominantly concerned with the expression of the anomie and atypical cultural phenomenon (e.g. civil disobedience, abnormal psychology, occultism, fringe sexuality, etc.) and how these ideas and behaviors are articulated and illustrated. He has incorporated a wide variety of media into his practice, including collage, video, photography and installation, and this versatility has allowed him to collaborate with a number of notable artists including AA Bronson, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Dennis Cooper, Kevin Drew (of Broken Social Scene), director Carter Smith, and G.B. Jones.
Recent exhibitions of note include: Male, Maureen Paley, London (2010); Silver Make-Up, The Breeder, Athens (2009); Where He Was Going, John Connelley Presents, New York (2008); Love Addiction: Practices In Video Art from 1961 to Present, Italy (2007); Biennale de Montreal (2007); Museum of Modern Art, New York (2006). He lives and works in Paris and Toronto.
Presented as part of the Jack H. Skirball Series.
REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater) is located at 631 West 2nd Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012 - in downtown Los Angeles at the corner of 2nd and Hope Streets, inside the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex. Parking is available in the Walt Disney Concert Hall parking structure and in adjacent lots.
Tickets are $11 for the general public, $9 for members and students. Tickets may be purchased by calling 213.237.2800, at www.redcat.org, or in person at the REDCAT Box Office on the corner of 2nd and Hope Streets (30 minutes free parking with validation).
Box Office Hours: Tue-Sat | noon-6 pm and two hours prior to curtain.