Cinema Without a Clause
On the occasion of “The Decency Clause”, there will be presented two film programmes which are strictly related to the theme of the Confrontations Festival and which will widen its contexts.
In the FEMALE WRITERS series, we will show movies about famous female American intellectuals whose lives and work constitute both a literary and moral challenge. Female writers – genuine icons of American culture and lesbian emancipation – will allow us to better understand what it means to engage privacy in the fight for social justice.
The series will present movies made by female directors, featuring the following powerhouses of North American culture:
Gertrude Stein – Waiting for the Moon, dir. Jill Godmilow
Elisabeth Bishop – Welcome to This House, dir. Barbara Hammer
Audre Lorde – A Litany For Survival. The Life and Work of Audre Lorde, dir. Ada Gay Griffin, Michelle Parkerson
Susan Sontag – Regarding Susan Sontag, dir. Nancy Kates
Jack Smith (1932-1989), a performer and pioneer of underground cinema, theatre and visual arts, is a key figure for the New York queer scene. He is the most radical of artists and the most artistically refined radical. The story of queer performance without Jack Smith is impossible, and his influence on Penny Arcade, the star of “The Decency Clause”, is invaluable.
In the JACK SMITH series, we will watch a movie made by Smith himself, entitled Flaming Creatures, as well as a documentary Jack Smith and the Destruction of the Atlantis, directed by Mary Jordan, in which the artist is seen and portrayed through archive materials and people who knew him.
The third movie is an art document directed by Jill Godmilow, which is partly a record of the spectacle Roy Cohn / Jack Smith performed by Ron Vawter, a Wooster Group actor. Ron Vawter plays here two emblematic characters: Roy Cohn – a Republican politician and lawyer known to the Polish audience mainly from Angels in America, and Jack Smith. What is the connection between them? They were both homosexuals, though one delivered ferociously homophobic speeches, while the other celebrated his homosexuality as a source of artistic inspiration.