Curated by Frank Stark, director of the Whanganui Regional Museum and former director of the New Zealand Film Archive
The Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre presents a state-of-the-art 62-seat cinema for audiences to experience the films of Len Lye and the wider world of local and international cinema. The cinema welcomes you to see historical experimental film, contemporary artist’s moving image and regular film festival programming. The cinema programme sees the return of the Govett-Brewster’s Art Gallery’s Projection Series, our regular film programme surveying the landscape of historical and contemporary fine art filmmaking.
From its very beginnings 120 years ago, film has used music to help tell stories. Before the talkies, live performers accompanied screenings and even then the first talkie - “the Jazz Singer” - was a musical. Experimental film makers have worked closely with music and musicians for almost as long.
The films in this programme feature a mix of musical collaboration and inspiration in films by Jordan Belson, Mary Ellen Bute, Oskar Fischinger, Evelyn Lambart, Len Lye, Norman McLaren and Barry Spinello. These artists found a perfect accompaniment for their direct film experiments in jazz and chamber music, often working with composers to achieve a dynamic synthesis of the two forms - visual music.