1. Ezra Wube’s A MEMORY OF ASTORIA

    Opening today at the museum is a new animation by the artist Ezra Wube. Commissioned especially for the Museum and organized by Jason Eppink, Associate Curator of Digital Media, the piece is based on present-day observations from Wube’s personal experiences, walks and interactions around the museum’s surrounding neighborhood. Here’s a description from Wube about his process: 

    I began with the idea of walking in the four directions from the museum building (north, south, east, and west), to experience the area. To make the animation I painted scenes from memory and photographed them. Each frame was painted on top of the previous one, each scene triggering the following scene. Memory interests me, perhaps because of my own personal biography. Time and place are not static for me. I grew up in Ethiopia, and now I live in the US. Not having a singular home might have influenced the fluidity of place and time in my work. When places and time continuously shift memory becomes a vehicle that connects and makes meanings to understand my existence. The performative aspect of the short reflects the bodily experience of the story. The body becomes the only definite witness that connects multiple realities. Sound was collected from the actual places I depicted in the animation. I remade the conversations, music and sounds of the environment. —Ezra Wube

    Watch a video excerpt of the piece here. A Memory of Astoria will be on view at Museum of the Moving Image through January 8, 2015.

     
  2. 1st Aug 2014

    Notes: 3

    Dick Smith (1922-2014)

    image

    Museum of the Moving Image mourns the passing of master makeup artist Dick Smith (1922-2014). Smith’s pioneering work on such films as Little Big ManThe ExorcistAmadeusThe Godfather, and many more, forever changed the way special-effects makeup is created and applied. Smith’s legacy will endure through the work of the many special effects makeup artists to whom he was a generous mentor.

    Read more about Dick Smith and the examples of his work in the Museum’s collection here.

     
  3. 15th May 2014

    Notes: 10

    The great Tanaka Kinuyo (in top photo, with Toshiro Mifune) in Kenji Mizoguchi’s The Life of Oharu (Saikaku Ichidai Onna) (1952). Photos courtesy of Janus Films. 

     
  4. 10th May 2014

    Notes: 10

    Takako Irie in White Threads of the Waterfall a.k.a. The Water Magician (Taki no Shiraito) (1933. Dir. Kenji Mizoguchi)

    Takako Irie in White Threads of the Waterfall a.k.a. The Water Magician (Taki no Shiraito) (1933. Dir. Kenji Mizoguchi)

     
  5. 2nd May 2014

    Notes: 5

    Jean-Luc Godard on Kenji Mizoguchi’s Ugetsu

    imageKenji Mizoguchi on the set of Ugetsu

    "…Ugetsu Monogotari is Kenji Mizoguchi’s masterpiece, and one which ranks him on equal terms with Griffith, Eisenstein, and Renoir. 

    The art of Kenji Mizoguchi is to prove that real life is at one and the same time elsewhere, and yet here, in its strange and radiant beauty.” 

    -Jean-Luc Godard (Arts, 5-12 February 1958, trans. Tom Milne)

     
  6. 1st May 2014

    Notes: 1

    Check out our trailer for Mizoguchi at Museum of the Moving Image. The 30-film retrospective of the great Japanese director runs May 2 through June 8, 2014 http://bit.ly/QhiGdK

     
  7. 29th Apr 2014

    Notes: 2

    Mizoguchi, a 30-film retrospective of the great Japanese director, runs May 2 through June 8, 2014. Our brochure opens up to reveal this poster! http://bit.ly/QhiGdK

    Mizoguchi, a 30-film retrospective of the great Japanese director, runs May 2 through June 8, 2014. Our brochure opens up to reveal this poster! http://bit.ly/QhiGdK

     
  8. 29th Oct 2013

    Notes: 17

    "There was a wonderful sense of revolution and innovation in the studio in Queens."—Gloria Swanson, on the Astoria studio, subject of a new exhibition now on view at Museum of the Moving Image
Swanson is seen here in her backstage “bungalow” during production of The Humming Bird (1924) with director Sidney Olcott (standing) and co-star Edward Burns (in uniform). 

    "There was a wonderful sense of revolution and innovation in the studio in Queens."—Gloria Swanson, on the Astoria studio, subject of a new exhibition now on view at Museum of the Moving Image

    Swanson is seen here in her backstage “bungalow” during production of The Humming Bird (1924) with director Sidney Olcott (standing) and co-star Edward Burns (in uniform). 

     
  9. 22nd Sep 2013

    Notes: 4

    Photo: John Barrymore and Carole Lombard in Twentieth Century (1934). Courtesy of Sony Repertory.
If film critics Andrew Sarris and Molly Haskell didn’t exist, Howard Hawks would have had to invent them; a garrulous, witty cinephile who became a paragon in his field, a woman who could match him insight for insight, and distinguish herself in an enclosed, nearly all-male world. Chief Curator David Schwartz interviewed them about Hawks in 2008 for Moving Image Source:

[Schwartz] Howard Hawks is a great example of a director who was rescued by film critics. SARRIS: Well, by the French!Could you talk about how that happened? Hawks was successful as a director in Hollywood, but not really known. SARRIS: He was successful, but he wasn’t prestigious. HASKELL: Wasn’t taken seriously. SARRIS: I think he was only nominated for one Oscar, for Sergeant York. And he never won an Oscar, of course. The first time I heard about him was when my friend Eugene Archer, went to Paris in the 1950s on a Fulbright. He wrote me a letter and said, “Who the hell is Howard Hawks?” He had signed a contract for a book that he was going to do about six directors: Elia Kazan, John Ford, George Stevens, and so on. The Cahiers people said, “Ugh! What about Howard Hawks and Hitchcock?”

Read the full conversation here. The Museum’s complete Hawks retrospective continues through November 10.

    Photo: John Barrymore and Carole Lombard in Twentieth Century (1934). Courtesy of Sony Repertory.

    If film critics Andrew Sarris and Molly Haskell didn’t exist, Howard Hawks would have had to invent them; a garrulous, witty cinephile who became a paragon in his field, a woman who could match him insight for insight, and distinguish herself in an enclosed, nearly all-male world.

    Chief Curator David Schwartz interviewed them about Hawks in 2008 for Moving Image Source:

    [Schwartz] Howard Hawks is a great example of a director who was rescued by film critics.

    SARRIS: Well, by the French!

    Could you talk about how that happened? Hawks was successful as a director in Hollywood, but not really known.

    SARRIS: He was successful, but he wasn’t prestigious.

    HASKELL: Wasn’t taken seriously.

    SARRIS: I think he was only nominated for one Oscar, for Sergeant York. And he never won an Oscar, of course. The first time I heard about him was when my friend Eugene Archer, went to Paris in the 1950s on a Fulbright. He wrote me a letter and said, “Who the hell is Howard Hawks?” He had signed a contract for a book that he was going to do about six directors: Elia Kazan, John Ford, George Stevens, and so on. The Cahiers people said, “Ugh! What about Howard Hawks and Hitchcock?”

    Read the full conversation here. The Museum’s complete Hawks retrospective continues through November 10.

     
  10. 13th Sep 2013

    Notes: 104

    Louise Brooks and Victor McLaglen in A Girl in Every Port (Howard Hawks, 1928). Showing Sunday, September 13, 2013, 6:00 p.m. with live music by Donald Sosin

    Louise Brooks and Victor McLaglen in A Girl in Every Port (Howard Hawks, 1928). Showing Sunday, September 13, 2013, 6:00 p.m. with live music by Donald Sosin