The CCA will host Polish-American filmmaker Bruce Checefsky for a talk and screening of his films.
Checefsky examines materials from the lost or unmade works of avant-garde experimental filmmakers Stefan and Franciszka Themerson, Jan Brzękowski, Andrzej Pawłowski, Leopold Survage, György Gerö, and Maya Deren, all subjected to the powerful vision of Bruce Checefsky. Since 2001, Checefsky has directed eight short experimental films based on lost or destroyed Central and Eastern European avant-garde films from the 1920s and 30s, and early American experimental films, or on previously published but unmade film scenarios and scripts. Drawing on archival documents to rethink the meaning of identity, history, memory, and loss, Checefsky uses historical artifacts in many of his films, or creates simulations of history, suggesting that even in the trace or absence of history there is a type of “dark matter” worth discovering.
Witch’s Cradle (2014) reimagines an unfinished, now lost 1943 short by pioneering experimental filmmaker Maya Deren (1917-1961). Deren shot the film with Marcel Duchamp in Peggy Guggenheim’s Art of This Century Gallery in New York City. Centered on a choreographed set of movements between the figure (played by Duchamp) and the camera, the film was intended to be an exploration of the magical qualities of objects in Guggenheim’s Gallery, where Duchamp also exhibited.
Bruce Checefsky is an experimental filmmaker and writer, and works as the Director of the Reinberger Galleries, Cleveland Institute of Art. His films have been screened internationally over 250 times in more than 30 different countries. His works are in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, NY; Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Brooklyn Museum of Art, NY; Museum of Modern Art, Saitama, Japan; The Minneapolis Institute of Arts and more. Checefsky’s writings on film and art have been published by MIT Press, Intellect Books UK, The Concise Focal Encyclopedia of Photography, New Art Examiner and more, as well as numerous catalog essays.