Artists' Television Access


Friday, March 4, 2011, 8:00 pm, $8-$10

MISSION EYE & EAR: a new live cinema series
film/video + music collaborations by:
… performed LIVE!
plus: encore performance/screening:
Postmark Tokyo by MARK WILSON (2007)
with live score by duo B. (LISA MEZZACAPPA/JASON LEVIS)
Artists’ Television Access (ATA) and San Francisco musician/curator Lisa Mezzacappa join forces to present a new live cinema series showcasing new work by Bay Area and West Coast artists. Experimental filmmakers and video artists collaborate with innovative local composer/performers on a series of new short works that premiere at Artists’ Television Access this spring, summer and fall. The spring edition of the series features new collaborations by Nara Denning and Kasey Knudsen; Carl Diehl and Phillip Greenlief; and Mike Kuchar and Randy McKean. The imagery spans nostalgic black-and-white video evocative of silent-era films, manipulated with modern video techniques, to disjointed pop culture mash-ups and textured conceptual imagery. The music, performed live by ensembles chosen by the composers, spans sounds, forms and genres from from experimental jazz to noise to indie pop to chamber music and electro-acoustic improv, incorporating meticulous composition and wide-open improvisation.  Mission Eye & Ear was conceived to celebrate and stimulate the diversity and creativity of local (and near-local) experimental filmmakers and composers, and to invite Bay Area film- and music-loving audiences to enjoy stellar work by local, often unsung, artists working outside mainstream visibility. For less than the price of a new release movie, audiences are invited to a uniquely Bay Area live cinema experience, and a glimpse of the creative process in a treasured (and fun) Mission District venue.
Artist Bios
San Francisco artist NARA DENNING has been creating short works of cinema in San Francisco for the past 10 years.  She approaches motion picture with a measured direction, which aims to paint each frame as a freestanding work of art.  She constructs her own sets and costumes and infuses her signature on every aspect of her work, which results in an uncompromised, original vision.  She was voted “Best New Silent Filmmaker” in the SFWeekly in 2009.
CARL DIEHL’s video essays and experimental works have screened nationally and internationally, at festivals and events including the PDX Film Festival, Northwest Film Forum, Other Cinema, Transmediale, and the International Symposium of Electronic Art.  In addition to his independent pursuits, he collaborates regularly with Portland’s Weird Fiction, a live audio-visual performance group.  He holds an MFA in Digital Art from the University of Oregon.  Most recently, his video Blobsquatch: In The Expanded Field, was published in the on-line arts journal Blackbird. He lives in Portland.
Since his emergence on the west coast in the late 1970’s Evander Music founder PHILLIP GREENLIEF has achieved international critical acclaim for his recordings and performances with musicians and composers in the post-jazz continuum as well as new music innovators and virtuosic improvisers. His ever-evolving relationship with the saxophone unfolds with an expansive sound vocabulary, a deep regard for melody and form and a rollicking humor and wit that is not dissimilar to the Native American Coyote tales. He is composer in residence with Rough and Tumble and teaches music at San Francisco Waldorf High School and the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts. Phillip is a past recipient of a San Francisco Bay Guardian Goldie Award.
KASEY KNUDSEN is a Bay Area saxophonist, composer and educator. She holds a B.A. in Jazz Composition from Berklee College of Music. Knudsen has been commissioned to compose and perform new work by the Joanne Langione Dance Company in Boston, MA, Intersection for the Arts and the De Young Museum in San Francisco, CA, and the Jazzschool’s Emerging Artist Series in Berkeley, CA. Knudsen currently performs with the collaborative trio “The Holly Martins,” the Kasey Knudsen Septet, the RW3 trio and is a faculty member of the Jazzschool, The Stanford Jazz Workshop and Los Medanos College.
MIKE KUCHAR is a San Francisco-based underground filmmaker and actor. His films are notable for the low-budget, high-camp/pop aesthetic that influenced subsequent artists such as Andy Warhol, John Waters, and David Lynch. Raised in the Bronx, he made his first films as a teenager in the 1950s with his twin brother George Kuchar and participated in New York‚Äôs underground film scene in the 1960s and 1970s. In addition to making his own films, Kuchar has collaborated with a number of artists including Rosa von Praunheim, Marc Arthur and Kembra Pfahler. In 1965 Kuchar filmed the sci-fi short film Sins of the Fleshapoids.  The Kuchar brothers collaborated on a book, Reflections from a Cinematic Cesspool. It is a humorous memoir discussing four decades of filmmaking and includes an introduction by filmmaker John Waters.
Alto saxophonist/clarinetist RANDY MCKEAN is carrying on the tradition of performer/composers who have revitalized creative music from the inside out, drawing upon its rich history of ideas to produce his own unique forms of expression. A multitude of sources inform McKean‚Äôs work: the abstract expressionist films of Stan Brakhage, the multi-tiered writings of Julio Cortazar, Alain Robbe-Grillet and Philip K. Dick, concepts from chaos theory and modern physics, all have influenced his use of form and representation. McKean‚Äôs music includes compositions for solo saxophone, saxophone quartet, woodwind quintet, string octet, and creative orchestra. His string quartet Passages was premiered by the Del Sol String Quartet in 2009.  McKean studied with Paul Smoker, Anthony Braxton and David Rosenboom. He performs his work regularly with the improvising ensembles Bristle, Pluck Vim Vigour, and Sawbones. His recordings include So Dig This Big Crux (Rastascan), and Child King Dictator (New World.) A graduate of Mills College, Randy lives in Grass Valley, CA.
duo B. is an ensemble of acoustic bass and percussion that plays ethereal chamber music wrapped in dense improvised soundscapes. Percussionist Jason Levis uses gongs, Tibetan singing bowls, bowed cymbals, marimba and drumset to create lush, delicate textures and abstract noise grooves. Bassist Lisa Mezzacappa draws on a palette of sinister drones, punchy vamps and acoustic bass manipulations to weave storylines through gnarly rhythms, pointillistic shapes and ecstatic melodies. duo B.’s influences range from free jazz to indie pop to contemporary chamber music, from Threadgill to Zorn, Wilco to the Boredoms, Messiaen to Grisey and back again. duo B. has performed widely throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, and most recently, in Germany.
MARK WILSON studied filmmaking at the San Francisco Art Institute in the early nineties with Larry Jordan, Gunvor Nelson, Ernie Gehr, and Nathaniel Dorsky.  In addition to making films, Mark spends a lot of time drawing.  In 2008, he self-published his experiment in the comic book’s sequential form:  mweep mweep.  Currently, he is  working on an animation project, combining interests in drawing and motion.
Curator Bio.
LISA MEZZACAPPA is a San Francisco-based bassist, composer and musical instigator. An active collaborator and curator in the Bay Area music community, she leads her own groups Bait & Switch and Nightshade, and co-leads the ensembles duo B., Cylinder, the Permanent Wave Ensemble, and the Oakland Active Orchestra. She collaborates frequently on cross-disciplinary projects in sound installation, digital poetry, film, sculpture and public music/art. As curator, for the past five years she has programmed the annual JazzPOP concert series at the UCLA Hammer Museum in Los Angeles; the monthly Monday Makeout creative music series in the Mission District of San Francisco, and the music and film series, Mission Eye and Ear, at the Red Poppy Art House and ATA. She has also curated and produced live music and film events at 21 Grand, Pro-Arts Gallery, the Headlands Center for the Arts and the Hypnodrome Theater. As part of Neighborhood Public Radio’s residency at the Whitney Biennial in 2008, she curated a week of free performances by outer-borough experimental musicians, broadcast live from a Madison Avenue storefront.
Organized by Lisa Mezzacappa &  ATA
with support from Southern Exposure’s Alternative Exposure Program and the Subito Program of the American Composer’s Forum.