2004 - 2005 Film and Video Tour Programming
War Shorts Program
A lot has happened over the past five years, and the Women in the Director's Chair International Film & Video Festival has covered it all. From worldwide terrorist attacks to US occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq, women media makers are responding to war. This program contains a diverse survey of work, from animated narrative (COLLAPSE & AND NIGHT ALSO NEVER COMES FOR THE REST) and testimonial (DRAWING THE WAR), to found footage montage that finds humor in the madness (THIEF OF BAGDHAD & STRATEGIC CYBER DEFENSE), to poignant documentary with rare and enlightening footage of Afghanistan (ZULAIKA) and the Palestinian/Israeli conflict (DAUGHTERS OF ABRAHAM).
Our So Called Histories
One of Women in the Director's Chair’s primary intentions is to showcase the stories that women media makers are telling that don't have an outlet in other venues. That means that our annual festival presents hundreds of unique and exciting stories each year from women, girls and transgendered media makers all over the world. This program features highlights, from hilarious (HERBERT III) and touching (AISHA) narratives, to startling (WHOSE DREAM), infuriating (SENTENCED) and touching (WAITING FOR SPRING) documentaries to animated historical tale (BESSIE COHEN).
This is a portrait of the masculine experience told from a feminine perspective. Documentaries by women (PILOTS ARE BADASS, WET DREAMS AND FALSE IMAGES) chronicle ordinary young men as they learn surprising lessons about themselves and the lifestyles they harbor. Narratives (DON’T NOBODY LOVE THE GAME MORE THAN ME, COME NIGHTFALL, and SPIN) highlight the thoughtful and curious sides of the male protagonists. Experimental works cover a remarkably wide range of content and form; animated shorts (THERE THERE SQUARE, INVISIBLE HAND) discuss the ugly truths within American history and economics, visual meditations (LAST DAY OF NOVEMBER, ALLO PERFORMANCE) prove that simple (yet beautiful) sights can have the most profound implications, and one long improvised shot of a woman (BETTY TALKS) recreates a famous scene previously trademarked by a man. This entire program gives an audience a refreshing sensation like seeing the negative print of a well-known photograph.
More than ever, the need for understanding and tolerance is apparent today. The only way to bridge the gaps of misunderstanding is to expose and explore different experiences and perspectives. Women in the Director’s Chair proudly features this segment with introspection (CAMOUFLAGE PINK, A FISH [ALMOST] EATEN BY A SHARK), emotion (ISN’T IT OBVIOUS, WHAT”S IN A NAME), and humor (DISPOSABLE LEZ, LES BE FRIENDS).
The Young and the Restless
To be seen AND heard! Women in the Director’s Chair has always supported up-and-coming film makers, and who better to shed new light on perspectives of identity (A FISH [ALMOST] EATEN BY A SHARK), religion (ME, MYSELF, AND I), and regionalism (SEARCHING FOR AN APPALACHIAN ACCENT) than young film makers. Insightful and invigorating, this program explores the world as seen through young film makers from different regions of the United States.
When was the last time a film or video captivated you? As the largest and longest women's Film and Video Festival in the United States, exhibiting and promoting outstanding contemporary independent film and video has been Women in the Director's Chair's (WIDC) primary focus for over twenty years. In March of 1981, our International Film and Video Festival premiered as a pioneering venue that celebrated and showcased women's voices, images, and subjectivities. It was such an overwhelming success that it has become a much anticipated cultural event every March in Chicago. Over the past two decades we have evolved into a feminist media center committed to year-round programming and cultural work that organizes for progressive social change and critical consciousness through race, class, sexuality and gender analysis.
Our Annual WIDC Film and Video Tour is an exciting expansion of the Festival. It brings the essential elements of the Fest-- new and established artists who are innovative and dynamic, insightful reflections on identity and existence, and the impetus to spark critical dialogues-- to colleges, universities, and cultural centers around the country. The opportunity for audiences to experience exceptional independent media is a rare one; the WIDC Tour is changing this. Screenings of the Tour create occasions to discuss the critical role media artists play in shaping and reflecting culture. It also extends a broader challenge. Empowerment entails de-constructing and re-envisioning dominant culture so that we create images that truly are our own. In what ways do radical imagination allow us to create better futures? WIDC welcomes you in pursuing that conundrum with us.