The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis Semi-Finalist at the Best Short Fest

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My film The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis has been selected as a Semi-Finalist at the Best Short Fest in Lanark County, Ontario.

BEST SHORT FEST is proud to bring the world’s best short films to the big screen at the historic community theatre in Lanark County, Ontario – less than an hour from Ottawa, and the United States (New York state), and 3.5 hours drive from Toronto.

After over 30 years as a live performance venue, since 2003 the theatre has regularly screened the best international films in partnership with the Film Circuit, a division of the Toronto International Film Festival Group, and BEST SHORT FEST continues this tradition, showcasing the talents of independent filmmakers from far and wide.

See the trailer here.

Awash at the TrixXxieFest Film Festival

LaurelsTrixXxiefest

Update:  “Awash” opens this year’s TrixXxieFest. The film opened the festival and was very well received by the audience. There were many photographers in attendance and the video was much discussed at the reception. See more here: https://roles4women.com/

I’m happy to have my short film Awash presented at the 2016 TrixXxieFest Film Festival in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada. Soundtrack Hydroscope by Gallery Six, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial- Share Alike 4.0 International License. Remixed Lisa MacLean.

Awash with landscape v1 (3).Movie_Snapshot

Awash with landscape v1 (4).Movie_Snapshot

Awash is part of a series entitled Urban Pastoral focusing on Vancouver’s seaside landscapes. In this work my interest is in the ways pastoral green spaces such as parks, gardens, nature walks, forest preserves, and others reconnect humans with nature and how such spaces might change with global climate change, high waters, and heat. A constellation of forces, including economic pressures, rising sea levels, extreme weather, and shoreline erosion, is affecting coastal areas worldwide. In Vancouver, the consequences of these changes for our society are beginning to register in the collective consciousness with recent reports that our city is one of the top ten around the world threatened by high waters.

We begin along Vancouver’s foreshore beaches, where people play and relax. Gradually the waters rise and waves swamp the picnicking and play areas; the inundation begins and fires flare. Alien creatures appear in our waters. The video ends with us swimming with the fishes through a tropical kelp forest.

The video’s unnatural coloration and technological processes (such as infrared photography) suggest our mutating relationship with nature and its consequences. Images of natural beauty console us that everything we love about our everyday environment is not being lost, while the slight psychic dislocation caused by the technological interventions – curious colour palette and image inversions – hints at decay and dissolution.

Awash with landscape v1.Movie_Snapshot

Awash with landscape v1 (2).Movie_Snapshot

TrixXxieFest is a pop-up Festival featuring short films, videos and performances to inspire, challenge and amuse – powerful voices from around the world and here at home. This year’s festival is happening from Friday June 24th and Saturday June 25th, 2016 at The Cox and Palmer Second Space at the LSPU Hall in downtown St. John’s, Newfoundland. The weekend will be a jam-packed two days of live performances, installations, screenings, parties and a punk rock show. This year’s event features an International program of film and video shorts highlighting experimental video, film-making, animation, and short documentary.

See the schedule here.

Read more about the festival here.

The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis selected for the 7th Annual NYC Independent Film Festival

laurel_Official_selection

My film The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis, soundtrack When I Die feat. michael dent (Youth “Don’t Feed the Trolls Rainbow mix”) by Jeremy Gluck and Michael Dent, remixed L. MacLean. Licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 International License, has been selected for the 7th Annual NYC Independent Film Festival running from April 27 to May 1, 2016 in New York City. For more information, click here.

It will be screened twice: Art/Experimental Session April 28, 2016 9:00 pm Producers Club – Studio 3 · 358 West 44th Street · New York, NY 10036 & Art/Experimental Films Sessions 4 April 30, 2016 12:00 pm Producers Club – Theater P · 358 West 44th Street New York, NY 10036. See the trailer below.

This film also won the Best Technical Achievement award at the Burnaby Film Forum in Sept. 2015.

NYC Independent Film Festival 2016 Program excerpt

Read my blog post about our trip to NYC for the Festival here.

Luminescence at the Deer Lake Gallery, Burnaby Mar 19 – Apr 9, 2016

Update: Amazing opening of the Luminescence exhibition at the Deer Lake Gallery in Burnaby, thousands of people, line-ups down the block. This group show celebrates the Spring Equinox with works that feature light in all its various manifestations. My video Sunset Song is featured on the wall screen. See my photos here. Read an article about the event here.

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My video Sunset Song will be screened at the Deer Lake Gallery in Burnaby in the Luminescence exhibition of works celebrating the Spring Equinox. The show opens Sat April 19 from 7 – 9 pm and continues until Apr 9. Hope to see you there!

WEBSITE - banner for luminescence (1)

Here’s some info about the work:

The video Sunset Song explores many different facets of light, both literal and metaphorical. We begin in a ruined cave house in central Anatolia, with a Spring Equinox ritual that I created entitled Nevruz Burning, a performance to celebrate the Middle Eastern New Year and the birth of Spring. Still celebrated today by Turks and Iranians, Nevruz is an ancient holiday based on astronomical calculations and involves the victory of light over the powers of darkness. During Nevruz fire rituals, such as jumping over bonfires, are engaged in as purification rites for the coming year.

Nevruz Burning, created while I was an artist is residence in Ibrahimpasa, Turkey, was made entirely out of found objects: wooden box from Shah Dede’s abandoned cave house, a skull from the Cappadocian valley, bones from the house’s sod roof, stones from a corner of the cave room itself, apricot tree branches, cotton headscarf material, golden twigs, and two banners made from garbage plastic sheets painted with a cruciform design in red and pink inspired by rock-cut church frescos in Cappadocia. In the spirit of Nevruz fire rituals, the performance, held on the evening of the Spring Equinox, saw myself and a local boy light the room and its contents on fire to purify the space for Spring.

From there, the video’s visual narrative takes us on a journey of bodies and sunsets, across fields and through canyons lit by northern lights and faces by molten lava, from sleeping figures and staircases illuminated by lightning and fire, to ruined buildings floating in a sunset sky. The journey ends in a Vancouver landscape where planetary portals to other worlds have opened up as the sun sets, through which we might slip into another realm.

Combining still photographs, both conventional and infrared, and video, Sunset Song is a meditation on the endless cycle of darkness and light, death and rebirth.

More info about the show here and here.

Selfies vs Self-Portraits: Expanding the Genre at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

Double Self-Portrait in a Burning Room 10

In conjunction with the exhibition The Artist Herself: Self-Portraits by Canadian Historical Women Artists running from Oct 2, 2015 to Jan 3, 2016 at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, the gallery organised a parallel show entitled Selfies vs Self-Portraits: Expanding the Genre. The premise of the selfie exhibition was articulated as follows: “We want you to think about more than just your face representing the self. Taking inspiration from the artists featured in the exhibition, we are looking for images that explore the definition of the self-portrait and representations of identity. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to redefine the genre by looking at the spaces you occupy, the things you create, the objects that surround and/or adorn you; all the things that create the likeness of you as an individual”. 

Double Self-Portrait in a Burning Room

I was happy to have two of my Double Self-Portrait in a Burning Room works included. For more info on the Historical Portraiture show, click here. For more on the Selfie exhibit, click here.

See a video about portraiture, with some shots of the works included in the show, below.

 

Video screenings!

Update: My film The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis has been selected for the 7th Annual NYC Independent Film Festival running in New York from April 27 to May 1, 2016. This film also received the award for Best Technical Achievement at the Burnaby Film Forum in Sept 2015.

laurel_Official_selection

Soundtrack: When I Die feat. michael dent (Youth “Don’t Feed The Trolls Rainbow Mix”) by Jeremy Gluck and Michael Dent is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 International License.

After its debut in Los Angeles and recent screening at Sun Peaks, my video The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis has been selected for screening at the upcoming Burnaby Film Forum. Hope to see you there!

2015 Promo Poster UPDATED

In addition, my video Fragile has been selected for the Access Code Short Film Festival in Srinagar, India in October 2015.

 

Midnight Sun Art & Film Festival, Sun Peaks, BC

We had an excellent time at the Midnight Sun Art and Film Festival in Sun Peaks, BC, about 45 km north of Kamloops, from August 7 – 9, for the outdoor screening of my video The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis, an experimental short which opened the festival.

See the Festival program Midnight Sun Art & Film Festival and my photos here.

New Video Work

Update: My film The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis, soundtrack When I Die feat. michael dent (Youth “Don’t Feed the Trolls Rainbow mix”) by Jeremy Gluck and Michael Dent, remixed L. MacLean. Licensed under an Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 International License, has been selected for the 7th Annual NYC Independent Film Festival running from April 27 to May 1, 2016 in New York City. For more information, click here.

It was screened twice: Art/Experimental Session April 28, 2016 9:00 pm Producers Club – Studio 3 · 358 West 44th Street · New York, NY 10036 & Art/Experimental Films Sessions 4 April 30, 2016 12:00 pm Producers Club – Theater P · 358 West 44th Street New York, NY 10036.

This film was also screened at the Burnaby Film Forum in September 2015 where it won the Best Technical Achievement Award and was featured at the Midnight Sun Art Festival in Sun Peaks, British Columbia, Canada running Aug 7-9, 2015. It was also screened at the LACDA 11 Year Anniversary Represented Artists Exhibit from April 9 – May 14, 2015.

The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis. Mixed media installations, projections, performance and video 2014-15.

The Fire Ceremony II: Metamorphosis represents an unfolding metamorphosis of elements that are transmuted through fire and water, from ancient ruins to an unknown future. As the ceremony proceeds a sequence of projections bathes the proceedings in a kaleidoscope of changing images and colours, all ultimately dissolved in fiery conflagrations. Beginning with a step through a flaming basement door into a ruined cathedral in central Anatolia, the visual narrative carries us through abandoned ruins and landscapes, to a Spring Solstice ritual burning for Nevruz, the Turkish and Persian New Year, to an idiosyncratic fire ceremony performed by an apprentice yogini, to an imagined post-apocalyptic west coast of British Columbia.

Requiem: Birds and Beasts: Mixed media installations, projections and video 2015. No soundtrack.

This work comprises digital images of a sculptural tableau of natural and pseudo-natural elements (a dead magnolia branch picked up during a bike ride, candles, LED lights, plastic flowers from a Mexican market), and photographic projections of animal specimens. I had the pleasure of access to the teaching collection of animal specimens at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC where I was able to examine their shelves and drawers of bird, mammal, and insect species. It was fascinating and also somewhat sad to gently handle and photograph their bodies; I was amazed to note how similar some of the small mammals and birds were to humans as they lay in their silent sleep.

Turkey Art Adventure Sept 27 to Oct 10, 2015

I am really excited to have been asked to lead a small group tour to Turkey this Fall with Finisterra Travel. See the itinerary here.

See my blog posts here for my 2014 painting trip to Turkey here.

Read about my month as artist in residence at the Babayan Art House, Ibrahimpasa, Turkey in March 2009 on the blog here.

Read about my month as artist in residence at the Gumusluk Academy on the Bodrum peninsula in Turkey for May 2009 here.