CROSSROADS at The Roxie: Need Falls Away

October 17 only

Presented annually since 2010, CROSSROADS is San Francisco Cinematheque’s annual film festival, a celebration of artist-made avant-garde/experimental film, video and performance from the international community. In its first (non-online) public screenings since February 27, 2020, Cinematheque is thrilled to be partnering with San Francisco’s Roxie Theater on the occasion of CROSSROADS 2021 for two programs of remixes of our online presentations, featuring 16mm and 35mm projection, artists in person (to be announced) and more!

Labor of Love (2020) by Sylvia Schedelbauer

With emphases, variously, on filmic materiality and the poetics of the body, the works on this program blend CROSSROADS 2021’s themes of transition, spirituality, interiority and isolation with tentative attempts at communication across great expanses, across generations and across metaphysical divides. Orisons and apotropaic conversations mingle amongst letters to friends and family lost.

SCREENING: untitled (teeming) (2021) by Gina Basso; digital video, color, sound, 4 minutes. The Mouth is Still a Wild Door (2020) by Guta Galli & Anne Lesley Selcer; digital video, color, sound, 4 minutes. Rehearsal (2020) by Talena Sanders; digital video, color, silent, 3 minutes. absolving the valve (2021) by Alix Blevins; digital video, color, sound, 10 minutes. Zero Length Spring (2021) by Ross Meckfessel; 16mm, b&w, sound, 16 minutes. Blue Distance (2021) by Devin Jie Allen; digital video, color, sound, 7 minutes. Not (a) part (2019) by Vicky Smith; 16mm, color, sound, 6 minutes. Oceano Mare (2020) by Antoinette Zwirchmayr; 16mm, color, sound, 7 minutes. Labor of Love (2020) by Sylvia Schedelbauer; digital video, color, sound, 12 minutes.

TRT: 69 minutes

untitled (teeming) (2021) by Gina Basso

Undulating surfaces, shifting horizons and perspectives merge with layered landscapes shimmering in hyper-saturated color and textured brilliance. Within the liminal space of sea and land, a shapeshifting woman—the mythic Selkie—breaks through the watery surface to search for her lost love. This project is a collaboration with ambient duo Animated Matter for their song teeming. Handmade animated sequences and still photography combine with found footage to create a kaleidoscopic, vivid and vibrant video that finds inspiration in early silent film color techniques, microscopic studies and psychedelic abstraction. (Gina Basso)

Oceano Mare (2020) by Antoinette Zwirchmayr

Seemingly stranded and enthralled like a somnambulist: a female figure amid a rocky, dried up riverbed. Motionless, exposed and yet turned inward. Now entwined in the branches of the sparse vegetation, now lying on the delicate fissures of the parched ground, from these convergences and from the interplay of images arises a sort of approximation, or analogy. The view of the details, of the particularities and textures of things, widens into the distance; standpoint and perspective shift, whereby the water, the river—and likewise the face of this woman, even with eyes closed—are revealed in succession. (Naoko Kaltschmidt; translation: Geoff Howes) Read the full statement here.

Zero Length Spring (2021) by Ross Meckfessel

A walk through corridors and rooms culminates in a familial Reiki session—searching for what’s underneath and within. Zero Length Spring is an apotropaic film, imprinted by rituals and symbols, basking in ruptures of the body and the earth. ASMR brush tracks, the language of self-help therapy, film surface abrasions and alleged paranormal photos, combine to give shape to various unseeable forces. You’re worth it, you deserve love, you can grow. (Ross Meckfessel)

Blue Distance (2021) by Devin Jie Allen

Occupying gaps in memory and history, Blue Distance serves as a personal and poetic intervention into the filmmaker’s familial immigration story. The film places in communion the mythic powers of cinema and the production of personal and cultural histories. Underpinning these tensions is the immigratory reality of occupying stolen land while trying to secure one’s own actualization. (Devin Jie Allen)

Labor of Love (2020) by Sylvia Schedelbauer

…I resolved to try and visualize a feeling of nowness that unfolds when one is in love. That feeling where the past and futures seem to fall away, when all that matters is every moment that evolves into another, and when that expanded grounding in the present tense seemingly lasts without effort. I didn’t want to narrow things down to one specific experience, or literal story; and I wanted to go beyond one singular notion, or definition. But how can you visualize affective structures that open up in what feel like cascading intervals, like traveling through infinite portals within portals, each opening up new and unexpected spaces? Processes that induce inspiring conversations––creative, intellectual and emotional? Processes that invite possibilities––and allow for change, generosity and growth? (Sylvia Schedelbauer) This film is dedicated to the memory of Paul Clipson. Full artists’ statement here

The Mouth is Still a Wild Door (2020) by Guta Galli & Anne Lesley Selcer

Now they preceded the country of their future which contained as yet only the arrow of their mouth whose song had just been born. (René Char)

I will recite all the names of the apples in a chain, enchain them, enchant them, bind them, bound them, chant them. The “feral house” of the poem is not a metaphor, it is the term for an abandoned house overtaken by foliage, a domicile lurking, covered, protected, masked, hidden, returned, and wild in a world that was not working. We will not be going back. The unmaking of the future has accelerated. Our entanglement is clearer than ever. Urgent memories of a world before our time, before our time keepers, appear with astonishing presence. They overtake what we thought was the future. It has no name yet, and is growing. (Guta/Selcer)

Rehearsal (2020) by Talena Sanders

Intimate moments of preparation for performances—for audiences and the everyday. (Talena Sanders)

absolving the valve (2021) by Alix Blevins

A tactile, trance-induced exploration of the filmmaker’s innate yet mediated relationship to her anonymous biological father. (Alix Blevins)

Not (a) part (2019) by Vicky Smith

Not (a) part responds to both the rapid decline of flying insects and the high recurrence of works that employ either, or all, of  the methods of animation, handmade or contact film, and with the subject and/or material of flying insects. Using the photogram method, found  dead  bees  were  contact  printed by positioning their parts directly onto negative film: occupying approximately 24 frames they run at a rate of 1 bee per second. (Vicky Smith)

Artist bios and more information at: 


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CROSSROADS at The Roxie: Need Falls Away: Upcoming Showtimes