White Cube/Dark Cube: Experimental film and the gallery. Deadline 15 November 2013

full name / name of organization: 
Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury Christ Church University, UK.

A one-day symposium exploring the changing dynamics of experimental film and video in the 21st century

Date: Wednesday 19th February 2014
Venue: Sidney Cooper Gallery, Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury, Kent, UK.

Since the 1990s film and video have become common features of the gallery environment. However, while what is now termed 'artists' film and video' has thrived within the white cube, and while 16mm film projection has survived thanks almost entirely to the gallery, experimental film and video makers have witnessed a decline in opportunities to show work on cinema screens, or to have their work broadcast on television. Meanwhile the growth of the internet has provided some film and video makers with an alternative means by which to reach audiences outside of the gallery.

Although critics such as Chrissie Iles have seen the environment of the white cube as a liberation from the 'restrictions' of traditional cinema ("Cinema becomes a cocoon, inside which a crowd of relaxed idle bodies is fixed, hypnotized by simulations of reality projected onto a single screen"), what is lost and what is gained when experimental film is shown outside the dark cube – the environment in which it first developed and once thrived?

This one-day conference explores the migration of art film and video to the gallery, and seeks to consider how the white cube has impacted upon the changing dynamics of experimental filmmaking in the 21st century.

Proposals are invited for 20 minute presentations addressing issues relating to the place of experimental film and video in the gallery. Alternatives to the traditional form of the 20 minute paper are welcome.

In order to encourage discussion the day will run with no parallel panels.

Topics for consideration might include (but are not limited to):

• the growth of gallery video
• artists film and video cf. work by film and video makers
• the nature of spectatorial and sensorial engagement engendered by the cinema and the gallery
• modes of subjectivity engendered by the gallery and the cinema
• spectatorial modes associated with the gallery and their relationship with experimental cinematic practice
• temporality and the gallery / cinema
• space and the gallery / cinema
• the pictorial focus of the gallery and its influence on work screened /selected
• the differing roles and priorities of the curator and the film programmer/TV commissioner
• changes in arts funding and production support and their impact on experimental film and video practice
• the fixed space of the gallery and the fluid space of the internet / the fixed space of the cinema and the fluid space of the gallery / the fluid space of the cinema
• expanded cinema in the 21st century
• event cinema
• pop-up cinema
• experimental film and video festivals in the 21st century
• experimental film and video and the internet

Please email a 250 word proposal, plus a short biography to Dr Andy Birtwistle (andy.birtwistle@canterbury.ac.uk) by 15th November 2013. Please include your name, affiliation (where appropriate), and contact email address. Please also include any A/V requirements with your submission.

Decisions regarding the status of submitted proposals will be made and communicated as quickly as possible following the submission deadline.

The symposium organizers hope to be able to make selected papers available in a gallery publication following the event, subject to agreement with contributors.