We are very happy to publish recordings of the five sessions that comprised the BIMI/Corkscrew: Birkbeck Practice-Research Doctoral Training Group event Repetition and Variation: Video Essays as Comparative Film and Television Studies Methodologies that took place on October 12, 2019.

Part One features Catherine Grant (Birkbeck) delivering an introduction to the event

Part Two features a presentation by Patrick Keating (Trinity University) on his comparative video essay work (including Dietrich Lighting [https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/arts/film/movie/8_audio_visuals.pdf] and The Strange Streets of a Strange City: The Ambersons Montage [https://vimeo.com/245480946])

Part Three features two presentations on their comparative  work by Catherine Grant (Birkbeck) and Chiara Grizzaffi (IULM). The videos Catherine discusses are online: The Marriages of Laurel Dallas;  Joan Webster Shares a SmokeThe Haunting of The Headless WomanDancing on the Carnival Square.

Part Four features a presentation by Kathleen Loock (University of Flensburg). The video Kathleen is discussing is published here: http://mediacommons.org/intransition/reproductive-futurism-and-politics-sequel

Part Five featured a Panel Discussion to conclude the event, featuring John Gibbs (Reading), Muriel Tinel-Temple (Birkbeck/Roehampton), Kathleen Loock (Flensburg), Chiara Grizzaffi (IULM) and Patrick Keating (Trinity University) and Catherine Grant (Birkbeck).

Thanks to Russell Banfield for his work on the videos.

Event Description 

Audiovisual essays are becoming more prominent in Film and Media Studies, not only as modes of expression, but also as forms of research practice, expanding the range of primary methodologies that are used in these scholarly disciplines. Journals such as [in]Transition: Journal of Videographic Film and Moving Image StudiesNECSUS: European Journal of Media Studiesand MOVIE: A Journal of Film Criticismoffer space for these works to be peer-reviewed and published, and thus to take up their place in a wider and even more public-facing network of online film and TV cultural websites.

This free Birkbeck Insititute for the Moving Image and Corkscrew, Birkbeck Practice-Research Network screening event and symposium will focus on videographic research in these modes that treats specifically the comparative questions scholars and critics ask of film and televisual forms. The precise topics and objects of study differ, ranging from explorations of musical repetitions in the Harry Potter film soundtracks and the representation of haunted space in recent examples of gothic serial television and cinema through to the (re)productivity of the recent Blade Runner film sequel and the complex practices of allusionism of Argentine filmmaker Lucrecia Martel. As Catherine Grant has argued of these kinds of video essay projects, working sensuously, temporally, graphically, as well as cognitively and verbally can help to generate very powerful and persuasive moment by moment understanding of audiovisual interrelationships.

The symposium will showcase the work of some of the best video essayists working today, and offer a rich space for their exploration with the audience of the potential for comparative research when undertaken through audiovisual mediation, that is, worked through in the same basic form as that of the original films and television shows.

Speakers/Video Essayists:

Patrick Keating is a Professor in the Department of Communication at Trinity University in San Antonio, TX, USA, where he teaches courses in film studies and video production. He is the author of Hollywood Lighting from the Silent Era to Film Noir (Columbia UP, 2010) and The Dynamic Frame: Camera Movement in Classical Hollywood (Columbia UP, 2019), and the editor of the anthology Cinematography (Rutgers UP, 2014). He has created six video essays, including “Dietrich Lighting” and “Motifs of Movement and Modernity.” His next project is a short book about Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Alfonso Cuarón, 2004). Patrick will present some of his new video essay work on Cuarón’s film.

Kathleen Loock is a postdoctoral researcher at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany. Her research focuses on Hollywood’s remaking practice, seriality, and the role memory and cultural repetition perform on the level of identity formation and imagined collectivization. She is author of Kolumbus in den USA (Transcript-Verlag, 2014), co-editor of Film Remakes, Adaptations, and Fan Productions (with Constantine Verevis, Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), and has edited several special issues: Serial Narratives (LWU: Literatur in Wissenschaft und Unterricht, 2014), Exploring Film Seriality (Film Studies, with Frank Krutnik, 2017), and American TV Series Revivals(Television & New Media, 2018). Her videographic work on Blade Runner and its sequel has recently been screened at the Besides the Screen Festival in Brazil.

Chiara Grizzaffi is adjunct faculty at the International University of Languages and Media IULM, in Milan, where she obtained her PhD in 2015. Her book on video essays, I film attraverso I film. Dal “testo introvabile” ai video essay was published in 2017 by Mimesis; her essays have been published in journals such as «Bianco e Nero» and «Cinergie» and in books like Harun Farocki. Pensare con gli occhi, edited by Luisella Farinotti, Barbara Grespi, Federica Villa and Critofilm. Cinema che pensa il cinema, edited by Adriano Aprà. With Daniela Persico and Filmidee she co-curated the collaborative video essays project “Per una controstoria del cinema italiano/For a Counter-history of Italian Cinema” (2017). Chiara will present work on Contemporary Gothic Films and TV Series that she co-authored with Giulia Scomazzon (IULM).

Catherine Grant is Professor of Digital Media and Screen Studies at Birkbeck, University of London. A prolific experimental video-essayist since 2009, she has authored and edited numerous studies of these audio-visual forms of film and moving image research and scholarship, including: The Videographic Essay: Criticism in Sound and Image (co-authored with Christian Keathley and Jason Mittell, 2nd ed., 2019); screenstudies.video(2019), a monographic website collecting and reflecting on her own practice; and another website collection The Audiovisual Essay (2014-present). She is also a co-founding editor of [in]Transition: Journal of Videographic and Moving Image Studies. Catherine will present her video essay on Lucrecia Martel’s La mujer sin cabeza/The Headless Woman.