BRIClab Video Art Screenings

The following films were created during the 2020 BRIClab Video Art residency. Created before and during the pandemic, this work encompasses many urgent themes of the past year--climate change, healthcare, incarceration, and immigration--while also necessarily being seen through the lens of isolation, death, and loss felt across the globe. This residency is often described in terms of access, as a program that takes place in Brooklyn’s Community Public Access Center. But this past year plus the tenets of a public access center have been strained--community engagement, sharing equipment, supporting one another’s projects--are in many ways not possible in isolation or the hardships we have all been forced to bear. Presenting these works, by many artists that are learning or relearning filming techniques, can be seen as a success under strained conditions, a triumph of will, or for some a prelude to a future finalized work. Embracing both of these modes of working is part of the ethos of community media, and one that feels more important and present now more than ever. 

Watch the films live below April 13 - June 29 or on Brooklyn Free Speech HD (Spectrum 1993, Optimum 951, Verizon 47) Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays from 7-9:30pm starting April 13.

Join us for a Public Artist Talk with the artists on Wednesday, May 12th from 7-8pm EST (Zoom Webinar).

Jonathan González, The Smallest Unit Is Each Other, 2021 | 35:25 min.

The Smallest Unit Is Each Other struggles for otherwise narratives regarding our interspecies planetary horizons ahead. Otherwise as in undergirded by Syvia Wynter’s Third Event, wherein a third human evolution can mobilize our storytelling capacities out of familiar colonial paradigms of catastrophe, and Kamau Brathwaite’s request for poetry that breaks with this pentameter. Otherwise visualities, auralities, and stories that affirm life are presented against the backdrop of transnational calls to course correct our existence in this six-part film of animation, archival materials, interviews, speculative geographies and original screen performances, organized by “SIDE” in the form of a cassette tape.

Jonathan González is an educator, cultural organizer, farmer, and artist at the intersections of performance and time-based media. González’s current projects speculate on otherwise Black and Indigenous cosmologies (Tiffany Lethabo King) of practice and poetry as a method towards breaking with the pentameter (Kamau Brathwaite) regarding systems of sociality, the afterlife of coloniality, and transnational dialogues on catastrophe and interconnectedness.

Their recent projects and collaborations include those at MoMA, MoMA PS1, Abrons Arts Center Performance Space New York, and Danspace Project, all NY; and Paragon Arts Gallery, Portland, Oregon. Their curations include Knockdown Center and Movement Research Fall Festival. Previously an LMCC Workspace Resident, NARS Foundation AIR, Jerome Foundation Fellow, Mertz Gilmore Grantee, Art Matters Fellow, and Performance Art/Theater Foundation for Contemporary Arts grantee. González holds an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.

As part of the 2020 BRIClab Video Art Residency, we published a number of personal responses to the videos created by this year's cohort. Read the commissioned essay, to be unmade, to be unfinished, to only ever be-with by Jah Elyse Sayers.

Sareh Imani, Center is not a particular point on the earth’s surface, 2021 | 7:45 min.

Confined to her Brooklyn apartment, Imani began obsessively filming her living space from the vantage point of a single stationary camera. The title of the work, Center is not a particular point on the earth’s surface is inspired by Yi-Fu Tuan’s Space and Place. Fixed on its tripod, Imani’s camera becomes witness to the mundane and then chaotic events surrounding her and her partner’s vacating the apartment and moving out of the city. The resulting footage navigates the making and unmaking of interior space through self-surveillance and the passage of time. 

Sareh Imani is a multidisciplinary artist who dwells between her individual studio work and her collaborative projects in alternative spaces. Imani’s work explores the reparative potential of art and science, intimacy and distance, instructions and poetics.

Imani has participated in group exhibitions at A.I.R Gallery, Grid-space Gallery, 17 and Essex Gallery, all NY. Her residencies and fellowships include: A.I.R. Fellowship at A.I.R. Gallery; BRIC; Artist in the Marketplace (AIM), The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx; the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture Fellowship, all in NY; MASS MoCA Residency, MA. Imani received an MFA from Parsons School of Design and an MFA from the University of Tehran, College of Fine Arts, Tehran, Iran.

As part of the 2020 BRIClab Video Art Residency, we published a number of personal responses to the videos created by this year's cohort. Read the commissioned essay In Defense of Domesticity, Monotony, and Interiority by Banyi Huang.

Melissa Joseph, Pocket Brass, 2021 | 4:46 min.

Pocket Brass, a collection of animations and videos, reflects on the history of pockets and how they function as political spaces. By providing the capacity for things like ownership, property, and privacy, even these tiny spaces are regulated, policed and sometimes forbidden. While they house a range of objects from the utilitarian to the sentimental, they can often hold the least "valuable" to the things missed the most when picked or stolen. 

Melissa Joseph is interested in connecting people through collective memory and shared experiences. Her work addresses themes of diaspora, family histories and the politics of how we occupy spaces. 

Joseph has participated in exhibitions at Textile Arts Center, Brooklyn NY; Bemis Contemporary Art Center, Omaha NE; and Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids MI; and PAFA Museum, Philadelphia, PA, among others. She is currently a Dieu Donné Workspace Resident,  Brooklyn, NY. She received an MFA from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and a MAT from Rhode Island School of Design. 

James McCracken, Do you know who I am?, 2021 | 7:50 min.

Do you know who I am? is a visual diary that confronts dissociation, memory fragmentation, and PTSD through 8mm and Super 8 home movies. This film is part of a larger project addressing mass incarceration in the United States and the proliferation of mandatory minimum sentences. 

James McCracken Jr. is a photographer, educator, and collector of things. He is interested in storytelling, memory, and structures of family and community. His research based process often engages narratives and histories to examine the psychology of power in relation to identity.

He has exhibited work at the Jewish Museum, Wallach Art Gallery at Columbia University, and SoHo Photo Gallery, all NY. He is the recipient of a Puffin Foundation Grant and Chico Hot Springs Portfolio Review & Charcoal Publishing Prize. He received an MFA from Columbia University and MA from Fordham University.

Autumn Newcomb, What’s Goin On?, 2021 | 5:54 min.

Two talk show hosts on opposite sides of the age spectrum end up getting real with each other and finding out they have a lot more in common than they thought. Together they transform into angry, vulnerable punks who can’t hold their feelings in any longer after a trying year.

Autumn Newcomb is a multidisciplinary media and performance artist. She uses color, humor, and optimism to fight the power and promote self love through a variety of mediums including video, soft-sculpture, illustration and glass.

Newcomb has exhibited her work at The Dimenna Center for Classical Music, Fashion Institute of Technology, and The Brooklyn Clay Tour. She received her BFA from Alfred University School of Art and Design. 

Elizabeth Orr, Mazes, 2020 | 2:48 min.

Mazes proposes the idea that the maze can be a way to visualize the process of psychoanalysis. The fictional qualities of Mazes and it’s construction, mirror the relationship in psychoanalysis between truth and the imaginary–not as oppositional but rather the means by which it operates. A two-subject documentary Mazes is based on interviews with psychoanalysts and maze designers/historians, accompanied by footage of both symbolic mazes and actual mazes. The genre of this video is framed as a “parafictions”: a term coined by Carrie Lambert-Beatty to describe an emerging genre in filmmaking, a combination of documentary and fiction. 

Elizabeth Orr is an interdisciplinary artist whose work combines video installation, sculpture, performance, and text. Her subject matter evolves from an interrogation into methodologies of thought and representation, oriented towards an understanding of the history of philosophy through a queer feminist perspective.

Orr has exhibited at La Kaje, Brooklyn, NY; Bodega, New York, NY; RPFA, Los Angeles, CA; CAC Brétigny, Brétigny-sur-Orge, France; and VIN VIN, Vienna, Austria. Orr has screened her work at Lubov, New York, NY; Tranzit Display, Prague, Czech Republic; and Anthology Film Archives, Art in General. She received her MFA from Bard College, and a BFA from Hampshire College. 

As part of the 2020 BRIClab Video Art Residency, we published a number of personal responses to the videos created by this year's cohort. Read the commissioned essay A Garden to Take Care of by Carolyn Ferriera.

Carrie Elston Tunick, Long Distance, 2021 | 47:01 min.

Long Distance is an exploration of love and isolation over a long period of time. Tunick visualizes the current pandemic through a moment of endless waiting, time slowed down, the monotonous marathon of repetition. The personal and shared pain that each person is feeling–and the lack of clarity around the future–is a collective experience, and yet each individual is so isolated in this common understanding. The artist captures both personal experience, as well as the collective experience, of this extraordinary moment.

Carrie Elston Tunick is a multimedia artist who explores manifestations of love and sanctioned violence in the public consciousness through videos, prints, and paintings. Her practice is primarily driven by her video works which pulls from world events both historical and contemporary, pop culture, politics, and environmental disasters for subject matter.

She has exhibited her work at Beverly's; Dino Eli Gallery; The Bronx Museum of the Arts; and Cuchifritos Gallery, all in NY. She has participated in the Sharpe Walentas Studio Program, the NARS Foundation International Residency Program, and Artist in the Marketplace (AIM) at The Bronx Museum of the Arts. Tunick received her MFA from Hunter College and her BA from Yale University.

Tanika I. Williams, Sanctuary, 2021 | 10:15 min.

Sanctuary combines academic research and autobiographical interviews, to illustrate stories of African-Caribbean mothers immigrating to the United States. The project highlights the original loss felt by the children left behind. The work also conveys the internalized turmoil and stress experienced by these grown children then giving birth in the US; the plight of pregnancy and parenting faced by generations of African-Caribbean women immigrants. 

Tanika Williams employs the use of narrative prose, video, performance, and installation to explore black women’s transfer of generational knowledge and transmission of embodied family archives. She designs liturgical rites to uplift the voices and expertise of marginalized black women and give authority to their autobiographical expressions in the production of knowledge. Her work is influenced by Afro-Caribbean aesthetics of magic and mystical phenomena.

Williams’s work has been featured on 99.5 WBAI; Art in Odd Places; Creative Time; Civic Art Lab, GreenspaceNYC; Let Us Eat Local, Just Food; and Performa. She has participated in the NYFA Immigrant Artist Mentoring Program. She holds a BA from Eugene Lang College, New School and MDiv from Union Theological Seminary. 

As part of the 2020 BRIClab Video Art Residency, we published a number of personal responses to the videos created by this year's cohort. Read the commissioned essay, Her departure, The Gap, Testimony by Andrea Nikté Juarez Mendoza.

Hanwen Zhang, Wander in New York, 2021 | 29:08 min.

In Wander in New York, three young Chinese women pursue their art-world careers in New York after graduate school until a global pandemic changes everything. Caught in the crossfire of a pandemic–quarantine, xenophobia, neo-nationalism–the three navigate life together with their beloved cat, Wander, as the due date for leaving the US draws near.  

Hanwen Zhang is an artist and filmmaker whose practice encompasses both still and moving images, supplemented by performance, digital technology, and writing. Derived from direct observation, his work examines the individual’s status in contemporary society, its existence as well as relationship with space, image, memory, and ideology.

His selected exhibitions and screenings include LongShots Film Festival, BBC Reel; OCAT Institute, Beijing, CN; CICA Museum, Gimpo, KRl; Arthaus Artist Residency, Havana, CU; Mannequins and Puppets, Millepiani, Rome, IT; TvE Caribbean Screenings 2019, Barbados Museum & Historical Society, Bridgetown, BB. Zhang has participated in the Fosun Foundation Art Residency, Fosun Foundation, Shanghai, CN, Summer Documentary Lab, UnionDocs, New York, NY, and VSC Artist-in-Residency, Vermont Studio Center, VT. He is the recipient of the Society of Architectural Historians Award for Film and Video. He received an MFA from the School of Visual Arts.

As part of the 2020 BRIClab Video Art Residency, we published a number of personal responses to the videos created by this year's cohort. Read the commissioned essay, Stateless Wanderers, by Zoe Meng Jiang.