James Benning: ALLENSWORTH
James Benning: ALLENSWORTH
In person: James Benning
“The artist is someone who pays attention and reports back.”—James Benning
Structuralist, avant-garde, minimalist… These are adjectives often applied in the process of describing the LA-based artist-filmmaker-educator-activist James Benning. For the last five decades, Benning has been an earnest and prolific practitioner of art and film. His innovation and highly refined creative language come from his candid diligence and genuine curiosity. His consistency in filmmaking is affirmation aligned with his work ethics and modest approach to exercising his right and responsibility of being an artist and filmmaker.
Born into a working-class, immigrant family in Milwaukee, Benning grew up directly experiencing and understanding the roles and impacts of capitalism and how the brutality of poverty deeply effects individual, community, and/or society, especially in relations to race and racism. Activist turned artist-filmmaker, Benning creates works founded on substantive narratives, manifested through heavily form-based aesthetic language that can potentially minimize the narratives. The evidence is there: Benning wants the audience’s deliberate engagement and participation while they experience his work.
Benning’s recent film ALLENSWORTH is a remarkable collage of images and sounds, created from his extensive survey of a ghost town founded in 1908 which became the first municipality in California to be run by African Americans. The crucial historical context, the fundamental component of the film, is reported to us by Benning via the meticulous, bold, and sophisticated language he employs in filmmaking.
Back to Main Series
Friday, September 22, 2023
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Special guest: Post-screening conversation with filmmaker Mike Kuchar.
Friday, November 17, 2023
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Thu, Jul 14, 2022
An Evening with Christopher Harris: New Restorations
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Thu, Aug 4, 2022
Animation from Another World: Chronopolis and Shorts by Piotr Kamler
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Thu, Sept 15, 2022
Derek Jarman: Super 8 Revelations
An eclectic array of Derek Jarman’s Super 8 films chosen especially for this occasion. In-person: James Mackay
Mon, Oct 24, 2022
Sally Cruikshank & Vince Collins: Cartoons for Convoluted Craniums!
In person: Sally Cruikshank.
Wed, November 16, 2022
J.P. Sniadecki: Two Films, A Decade Apart…
In person: J.P. Sniadecki.
Thursday, January 19, 2023
Mike Henderson: The Blues and the Abstract Truth
In person: Mike Henderson
Monday, February 6, 2023
Thom Andersen: Work on Film
In person: Thom Andersen.
Saturday, March 4, 2023
Thursday, April 20, 2023
Monday, May 15, 2023
Harry Gamboa Jr.
Special guest: Post-screening conversation with artist, author, and educator Harry Gamboa Jr.
Saturday, June 3, 2023
Made in Hollywood by Bruce and Norman Yonemoto
In person: Bruce Yonemoto and Patricia Arquette.
Wednesday, July 19, 2023
You & Me & the Cosmos Makes Three: An Evening with Deborah Stratman
In person: Deborah Stratman.