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King of B-movies – Roger Corman

Posted by on Sep 12 2013 | Motion Pictures

Director’s note via Films & Events 9/10, 2013

The Intruder (1962)

The Intruder (1962)

The George Eastman Award for distinguished contribution to the art of film was established in 1955, and was the first award by an American film archive to honor artistic work of enduring value. In bestowing this honor, we recognize individuals who have enriched the field of motion pictures. Legendary recipients have ranged from George Cukor and Fred Astaire to Martin Scorsese and Meryl Steep.

This year’s award, being presented to Roger Corman on November 2, marks our belated embrace of independent cinema. Far surpassing his reputation as the undisputed king of B-movies, Corman has had an enormous impact on both independent and mainstream cinema over the past six decades. He is the paragon of the independents.

Best known for The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)—said to have been filmed in just two days—and his Edgar Allan Poe cycle starring Vincent Price, Corman has had a long career as a director of groundbreaking and entertaining films. He fearlessly approached every subject he covered, from monster movies and gangster films to psychedelic drugs and burgeoning countercultures.



In 1962, he made the only feature film about the civil rights movement to be made during the civil rights movement: The Intruder, starring William Shatner, which was shot on location in the Deep South.

Corman’s dedication to independent film production quickly set him apart from other producers and directors in the 1950s and 1960s. Having produced more than 550 films, Corman is known for working with incredibly small budgets and in short periods of time. The films he produced and directed in the 1950s for American International Pictures were highly successful, low-budget features—the kinds of films he has continued to make and support throughout his career.

With a famously sharp eye for talent, Corman is credited with having discovered some of the most remarkable actors and directors of the last five decades. He fostered the careers of Jack Nicholson, Francis Ford Coppola, Dennis Hopper, Peter Fonda, Robert De Niro, Jonathan Demme, Martin Scorsese, Ron Howard, and James Cameron, among many others.

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Corman was a sympathetic and accessible mentor, often giving those with little or no experience opportunities to direct or star in his films.
Corman’s sense for great cinema has reached far beyond his own productions. In the 1970s, he brought to American audiences foreign-language films that were ignored by major distributors.

New World Pictures, the company that Corman founded with his brother in 1970, distributed not only a slew of Corman’s own films, but also masterpieces by auteurs such as Ingmar Bergman, Federico Fellini, Akira Kurosawa, and François
Truffaut, as well as important works by less well-known foreign directors.

As director, producer, mentor, and distributor, Roger Corman has helped to define motion pictures. Join us in celebrating a true American independent as we honor Roger Corman for his exceptional career and tremendous contributions to cinema.

Ticket information available now.

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The Gender Show Opens

Posted by on Jun 12 2013 | Exhibitions, Photography

HILLER

LEJAREN À HILLER (1950) Naval officer and young man on hillside with binoculars, overlooking battleship in bay below Color print, assembly (Carbro) process © Visual Studies Workshop / Image courtesy of George Eastman House International Museum of Photography & Film

Director’s Note – Since before Marcel Duchamp photographed Rrose Sélavy, his female alter ego, artists have used photography to explore issues of identity, sex, and gender. In recent decades, gender has been an increasingly prominent theme within contemporary art and, specifically, within photography. The Gender Show (on view through October 13) offers an extraordinary opportunity to see fifty contemporary artworks in the context of over 150 photographs from our worldclass collection.

The exhibition includes, on loan from artists and private collectors, a formidable set of photographs by prominent contemporary artists Janine Antoni (born 1964), Rineke Dijkstra (1959), Marilyn Minter (1948), Catherine Opie (1961), and Gillian Wearing (1963). Works by each of these artists have been exhibited extensively at leading museums, but this is the first time that any of their works has been shown at Eastman House.

Debbie Grossman (American, b. 1977) Jessie Evans-Whinery, homesteader, with her wife Edith Evans-Whinery and their baby 2010 From the series My Pie Town Archival pigment print ©Debbie Grossman, Courtesy Julie Saul Gallery, New York

The exhibition also includes ten photographs on loan from our trustee Elaine Goldman; gender issues are one of the themes in her wonderful collection. Also featured are videos by artists Jen DeNike (1971), Kalup Linzy (1977), and Martha Rosler (1943). In our Annex Gallery, we present sixteen photographs, on loan from artist Debbie Grossman (1977), from her recent My Pie Town series, in which she used Photoshop to manipulate a set of images of Pie Town, New Mexico, originally taken by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration in 1940.

The Gender Show, part of our ongoing program of major exhibitions from our permanent collection, is a survey of how photographs since the mid-nineteenth century have presented gender, with a special emphasis on the performances that the act of photographing or being photographed can encourage or capture. On view from our collection are photographs by many of the biggest names in the history of the medium—including Julia Margaret Cameron, August Sander, Edward Steichen, Nickolas Muray, Brassaï, Robert Frank, Andy Warhol, Barbara Norfleet, Mary Ellen Mark, and Cindy Sherman—as well as rarely seen cabinet cards depicting early vaudeville and music-hall stars.

thegendershow

In 1979, art scholar and critic Douglas Crimp (now the Fanny Knapp Allen Professor of Art History at the University of Rochester) included photographer Cindy Sherman among the emerging artists covered in his article “Pictures” in the influential art journal October. This article was a landmark in the contemporary art world’s embrace of photography as an artistic medium. In the ensuing years, young artists increasingly adopted photography as part of their artistic practice. Unfortunately, there has been an abiding separation between “contemporary photographers” and “contemporary artists” whose artistic practice is primarily or in part in the medium of photography. This artificial segregation has had a long-term adverse impact on exhibition programs and collection building at every one of the American museums with a leading photography collection, including George Eastman House. Our exhibition places works by contemporary artists in a broader context, illuminating art historical, aesthetic, and social issues and celebrating the diversity of inquiries into gender.

The first exhibition organized under my direction, The Gender Show represents a commitment by George Eastman House to exhibit and collect photographs by those in the contemporary art world. Photography is one of the most important media in contemporary art. Our world-class collection of photographs must include great examples of work by contemporary artists. The core exhibition of works from our permanent collection is curated by Senior Curator Alison Nordström and Assistant Curator Jessica Johnston. Additionally, Jessica chose the photographs kindly lent by Elaine Goldman. I had the pleasure of selecting the other contemporary artworks from outside of our collection. We hope that you enjoy the results of our collaboration.

More works from The Gender Show can be viewed on Artsy.

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