Autre Fois J’ai Aimé Une Femme, 1966, U.S., 16mm, 24m
Tomorrow’s Promise, 1967, U.S., 16mm, 42m
Remembrance: A Portrait Study, 1967, U.S., 16mm, 6m
Private Imaginings and Narrative Facts, 1968-70, U.S., 16mm, 9m
This program collects four newly restored short and medium-length films by the pioneering queer Black experimental filmmaker Edward Owens. A student of Gregory Markopoulos, Owens combined the strikingly staged, dramatically lit compositions of Markopoulos’s work with image-layering and superimpositions of pop cultural iconography to arrive at a singularly entrancing evocation of people and places. Private Imaginings and Narrative Facts pursues a dialectic of visual spaces and of stillness and motion. Autre Fois J’ai Aimé Une Femme conjures illicit desire on the surface of the skin, in the sound of a ferocious row, in magazine clippings, and in classical paintings. Tomorrow’s Promise focuses on the body by way of starkly lit portraits to meditate upon the tension between presence and absence, before shifting to zero in on the figure of a pensive bride. And Remembrance: A Portrait Study is an ode to Owens’s mother and her friends, adorned with the sounds of Marilyn Monroe singing “Running Wild” and Dusty Springfield’s “All Cried Out.” Restored by Chicago Film Society, The New American Cinema Group, Inc./The Film-Makers’ Cooperative, and the John M. Flaxman Library at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with the support of the National Film Preservation Foundation’s Avant-Garde Masters Grant Program and the Film Foundation. Funding provided by the Hobson/Lucas Family Foundation.