York talent in the spotlight at Inside Out film festival

An innovative array of creative works by filmmakers, including students, faculty and staff from York’s Film & Video Department, will be screened at Inside Out, the Toronto Lesbian and Gay Film & Video Festival. Now in its 15th season, the festival has witnessed a blossoming of films about alternative sexuality.

The 11-day international festival, which opened May 19 and continues through May 29, features 270 outstanding productions in more than 80 programs. The themes and story lines are topical and engaging, reflecting the concerns of anyone who thinks carefully about the world and their place in it.

Here’s a glimpse of York talent at this year’s festival:

Graduate student Mary J. Daniel‘s Confessions of a Compulsive Archivist (2004) will unreel May 23 at 1pm at Cumberland 2 Cinema, as part of the “Outside the Box” series. Daniels’ film is a seven-minute experimental documentary. “Built from artifacts recovered from first my own, then my mother’s storage closet,” said Daniel, “my film follows the tragic-comic story of my personal struggle to let go of a few things of no use to me.” Confessions of a Compulsive Archivist was previously screened last month in the International Shorts section of Images Festival 2005, winning the Steam Whistle Homebrew Award, which recognizes excellence and promise in a local artist (see the full story in the April 19 issue of YFile).

Also on May 23, Maricones (2005), by York Film & Video Department studio technician Marcos Arriaga, will be screened at 1pm at the Isabel Bader Theatre as part of the “Faggots” series. This 52-minute documentary in 16 mm/Super 8/video (on video) format explores the experiences of two gay men struggling with their past and present situations in contemporary Peru. The film is in Spanish with English subtitles.

As part of the “Fight the Power” series, graduate student Liz Singer‘s Every Other Day of the Week (2005) asks, plays with and ponders the shape of dykedom today. Her seven-minute experimental documentary will be shown along with film & video Professor John Greyson‘s Motet for Zackie (2003). This eight-minute video opera for 20 male voices on the theme of AIDS, directed by Greyson, pays homage to South African AIDS activist Zackie Achmat. Both films will be screened May 25 at 5:15pm at the Cumberland 2 Cinema.

Fourth-year student Pete Adamsdefinitions (2004) is a 12-minute experimental documentary video which tells the story of a man growing up on a farm. The film examines the ways we define ourselves, particularly the role that the media play in constructing one’s identity. It will be shown along with For My Father (2004) by fourth-year student John Ibbitson, who will be graduating in June. His eight-minute documentary, originally shot in 16 mm/Super 8/video, offers a look at an apology from a son to his father after years of misunderstanding. Both productions unspool May 29 at 2:30pm at the Varsity 3 Cinema, as part of the “No Deposit, No Return” series.

Festival screenings take place at five main venues in Toronto, including the Isabel Bader Theatre, Cumberland Cinemas, Varsity Cinemas, the Goethe Institue and NFB Mediatheque. For a complete schedule of screenings, events and venues, visit the Inside Out Web site.

This article was submitted to YFile by Mary-Lou Schagena publicist, Faculty of Fine Arts.