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This two-part program presents a broad selection of work created using the Fisher-Price PXL 2000, a toy video camera which records on regular audio tapes, and produces a distinctive low-resolution black and white image. Although unsuccessful as a mass-market toy, the PXL 2000 has become a favorite tool for avant-garde video and filmmakers. In the past years, individual enthusiasts such as tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE (in Baltimore) and Gerry Fialka (in Venice, California), and institutions like the MOMA, Pacific Film Archives and The Kitchen have organized festivals of Fisher-Price work. This is the first such extravaganza to be presented in Canada.
Friday, July 7
This program consists of several short works that employ the PXL 2000 in radically different ways encompassing the completely abstract (Jeffrey Pratt’s Harnessing), the intimate and personal (Sadie Benning’s Jollies)and the minimalist political humour of Marnie Parrell’s Smart Bomb. Michael O’Reilly’s acclaimed Orion Climbs charts a family history by combining Fisher-Price with other video formats. Other works include Pretty Boy & His Master’s Voice by Joe Gibbons and Plastic Surgery by D.S. Bakker.
Saturday, July 8
Exploring junkie culture from an anti-realist perspective, the two videos in this program adapt the Fisher-Price recorder to create ‘feature’ length works. In Peggy Ahwesh and Margie Strosser’s Strange Weather, an impending hurricane sets the stage of tension and paranoia amongst three junkies trapped in a Florida house waiting for the storm to hit. A docudrama this ain’t. Taking a different strategy, Leslie Singer’s Taking Back the Dolls is an over the top remake of the classic movie Valleey of the Dolls. Picture Sharon Tate and Patty Duke as pill-popping lesbians and you’ve got the gist of this lesbian high-camp revision.
by Sadie Benning