I brought together three different films and filmmakers/film making co-operatives for a screening and discussion around collaborative moving image making.
Helen Hill/Paul Gailiunas' The Florestine Collection began its life as a collaborative but authored work by Hill. The film was completed by her husband Gailiunas after her tragic death. Gailiunas was first and foremost a doctor, not a film maker, and so had to teach himself film making as well as enlist help from friends and the wider community to complete the work (his band soundtracks throughout). The finished piece is a moving testament to a film maker who the world is poorer without. Hill's life and work has had a huge impact on me, and artists film more widely - she is best known as the author of Recipes For Disaster, a bible of alternative film making processes which she shared freely with film makers across the world.
Film Bee's More Cooks was made on a residency in Christiania, the widely-known housing co-operative/'freetown' in Copenhagen (Denmark). The Newcastle Upon Tyne (UK) based group's membership has slowly shifted over time, but retains a commitment to close knit, DIY, kitchen table collaboration. As well as being made in a co-operative manner, the film explores the group's attempts to integrate the community into the film making process, and the wider advantages and frustrations of communal life in the town.
Studio één's Vitaal Filmen was initiated as a collaborative film by the Amsterdam (Netherlands) based co-operative. Every participating artist was responsible for documenting a different part of the human anatomy. What emerged is essentially a set of individually-made films, collectively making an individual (literally and figuratively) by the sum of their parts. The beautiful and at times comedic film is structurally collaborative but allows for individual authorship within that whole.
I was able to screen all films on the format in which they were originally mastered. After the screening we had a lively and engaging discussion with two of the film making groups present, about the trials and successes of their own projects and collaborative authorship more generally.