Friday November 6, 8pm
The Spectre of Musidora: Live Remix
with MV Carbon and Brock Monroe
Photo by Olivia Wyatt – image courtesy of the artists
Filmmaker Michelle Handelman and musician MV Carbon present The Spectre of Musidora: Live Remix, a dissonant revisitation of the lost films of silent film star Musidora and her legacy as the first “vamp” of cinema: the iconic Irma Vep. The Spectre of Musidora: Live Remix features musician MV Carbon performing a haunting and dissonant soundtrack to a live mix of films by Brock Monroe and Michelle Handelman that includes in addition to Musidora’s own lost films, clips from Les Vampires and Handelman’s recent Irma Vep, The Last Breath starring transgender artist Zackary Drucker (Transparent) & drag icon Flawless Sabrina (The Queen).
Musidora, born Jeanne Roques, was an early 20th century feminist who used her fame as Irma Vep to become one of the first female feature film directors of French cinema. She was also a renegade artist who created sculptures, paintings, novels and plays in addition to acting and directing.
Les Vampires premiered across Europe in November 1915. Shot during World War I, it follows the exploits of a brazen Apache gang who rob the elite of Parisian society. Its subtext of the working class versus the ruling class is cloaked in a macabre and ritualistic plot with episodic titles such as The Severed Head, The Thunder Master and The Terrible Wedding. Sometimes seductively garbed in a black catsuit, sometimes disguised as a boy, Musidora embodied a new type of liberated woman, a cinematic anti-heroine with intelligence and power who became the icon of French cinema.
Michelle Handelman’s ongoing project Irma Vep, The Last Breathe examines the legacies of the silent film character Irma Vep from the film Les Vampires (Louis Feuillade, 1915), and the life of the actress Musidora who portrayed her. The event is the last in a series of screenings, lectures and readings, which took place this month at Anthology Film Archives, Participant Inc., and Invisible-Exports, organized by Handleman in celebration of the 100th year anniversary of the movie Les Vampires by Louis Feuillade starring Musidora as Irma Vep.
$8 – general admission
$6 – students with valid ID
Michelle HANDLEMAN is a filmmaker and interdisciplinary artist who makes confrontational works looking at the relationship between the forbidden and the sublime from a queer feminist perspective. She is a Guggenheim Fellow and recipient of several grants including Art Matters, Creative Capital MAP fund, and New York Foundation of The Arts. Her work has shown internationally including the Centre Pompidou, Paris; ICA, London; MIT List Visual Arts Center; PERFORMA 05; Participant, Inc.; Exit Art; Guangzhou 53 Art Museum, China; Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum; SF MOMA; The Henry Art Gallery; and The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art. More info at www.michellehandelman.com
MV CARBON is a Brooklyn based artist who is recognized for her non-traditional approach to music. She plays cello through electronics, and uses tape machines, vocals, electronic processes, analog synthesis, frequency, tone and imagery to induce physical commotion. She was a recipient of Roulette’s Spring 2015 Residency from the Jerome Foundation and has performed at MoMA P.S.1, The Guggenheim BMW Lab, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Issue Project Room, and The Clocktower Gallery, among many others. More info at www.mvcarbon.com
Brock MONROE is an artist and designer with a focus on live cinema and projector performance. His work has been presented at Lincoln Center, The Kitchen, Portland Institute of Contemporary Art, The New Museum, and ISSUE Project Room, among others. As one of the lead artists in the Joshua Light Show, Brock has collaborated with founder Joshua White to create live cinema performances at The Barbican, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Transmediale/CTM Festival (Berlin), Lincoln Center Out of Doors, Museum of Fine Arts Houston, New World Symphony for Performa/Art Basel Miami Beach, among others.