Thursday, June 14
Doors: 7:00 pm
Screening: 8:00 pm (dusk)
Free and open to the public. Cash bar. All programs include Q&A sessions with the artists.
For over a decade, Jim Finn has made films that revel in unlikely pairings, blending elements of the sinister and the absurd in works that take a satirical look at everything from love to Communism. A St. Louis native now living on the East Coast, Finn continues to reference his hometown in his work—from making a Cardinals game a venue for a revolutionary anthem in el pájaro (2005) to using a clip from Monument to the Dream: The Making of the Gateway Arch to narrate footage of maximum security prisons across the United States in super-max (2003). Like the disconnect between a karaoke song and the on-screen video made to “match,” the sound in Finn’s films is often at odds with the imagery to disturbing and comical effect, such as the German-language disco version of “Singing in the Rain” that plays as the narrator describes the characteristics of a small rodent in wüstenspringmaus (2000). This presentation features one of Finn’s most recent feature films The Juche Idea (2010) along with a selection of these earlier short films. Q&A session with the artist to follow.
The Juche Idea
2008, United States, 16mm on video, color, stereo, Korean / English, 62 mins.
Employing Kim Jong-Il as theories of film and art encapsulated in the notion of Juche (pronounced choo-CHAY), The Juche Idea finds Finn documenting the story of Yoon Jung Lee, an artist-in-residence in North Korea who appears to have embraced Juche whole-heartedly. Bringing together found footage of state-sponsored events, interviews at the residency, film clips, and language detailing the significance of Juche, Finn’s film highlights the slipperiness between fact and fiction, truth-telling and propaganda. (Leslie Wilson)
2002, United States, video, color, stereo, 3 mins.
The gerbil has long been associated with New World capitalism because of its incessant energy. The Golden Age of Hollywood takes on the history and evolution of this delightful household pet. (International Film Festival Rotterdam)
2003, United States, video, color, stereo, 13 mins.
Finn’s chilling super-max is a tour of maximum security prisons shot from a moving car, their hulking forms framed by telephone poles and power lines that divide landscape and sky. The concluding voice-over, making reference to Lewis and Clark, implicitly equates the European occupation of this continent with imprisonment. (Fred Camper, Chicago Reader)
el pájaro (from the La Lotería series)
2005, United States, video, color, 2 mins.
A red-state playoff game is the excuse for a world uprising. (Jim Finn)
Upcoming Concrete Cinema presentations:
July 7 - Director Ryan Eslinger’s Madness and Genius (2003).
August 9 - HOME (2010) and the world premiere of a new projector performance by Andrew Lampert.