Sami van Ingen – 2005 Artist in Residence
Sami van Ingen is one of the founders of the now defunct but already legendary Helsinki Filmmakers’ Co-op (Helsingin Elokuvapaja). In 1989, a group of young visual artists set up a working space for non-professional but artistically ambitious film production at the former Nokia Cable Factory. Many of the films created at the Filmmakers’ Co-op represented a style that can be called neoprimitivism. They were technically crude, often black and white, silent, edited in the camera and hand-developed. Van Ingen was recently in Toronto screening his film Fokus at Images Festival 2005.
Fokus is based on a 16mm home movie shot in India during the early 1960s by the director’s grandmother, Barbara van Ingen. The original 11-minute stretch of film portrays the spectacular Dussera procession arranged annually in the town of Mysore.
Van Ingen’s new project VENDA will screen at Pleasure Dome on November 25th. Presented by LIFT and Pleasure Dome
A note from Van Ingen on VENDA: VENDA’s an old Finnish sailing slang word meaning: a slow turn, somebody waiting at the peer. The work examines two specific moments related to my personal history: me picking strawberries when I was 5 years old (a short sequence of super-8, my mother took) and a war time newsreel shot of my grandfather, Robert S. Flaherty. I am interested in the matter-of-factness of these images, the “fleeting moment, just passing by”–quality of them. The movements and esthetics of the shots are all familiar to us all: the redness of the strawberries and the healthy pink cheeks in Kodachrome and the matter of fact restraint of the 35mm black and white newsreel in which the jittering unattractive image of the plane is recorded with no apparent nostalgia. The events depicted in the found footage represent the opposite ends in the spectrum of life: a childhood and a war. My art seems to revolve around movements (visual and temporal) and examining representation in images and situations. I use mostly film that I often hand process and optically manipulate.
—Sami van Ingen/Filmmaker/visual artist
Tuesday 1 November 2005 00:00