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Feature Article

June 17, 2018

Robert Beck Memorial Cinema: January — May Screenings, 1999

Film flyer featuring Marilyn Monroe with her eyes cut out

Part One of this series is about the origin of the Robert Beck Memorial Cinema (RBMC). Part Two covers all the screenings in 1998.

Continuing into 1999 at the Collective Unconscious theater space in NYC, the RBMC — co-programmed by Brian L. Frye and Bradley Eros — went on hiatus for the first week of the year, but resumed on January 12. Below is a list of screenings from then until a May 18 event that celebrated the RBMC’s first full year of existence.

The films and filmmakers selected to screen by Frye and Eros represent an interesting time in the sphere of avant-garde and experimental cinema. Up until this point, there seemed to be a distinct separation between the formal style of, say, structuralism, and the more raucous, punk rock world of the “underground.” However, in the 1990s, these two worlds appear to be colliding. The RBMC seemed just as content screening Hollis Frampton‘s Critical Mass (Feb. 23) as it did Jennifer Reeder‘s Nevermind (March 13).

In fact, Nevermind screened as a special RBMC presentation at the 6th annual New York Underground Film Festival. Frye and the RBMC apparently had a fan in Festival Director Ed Halter, who had written an article about Frye in the December 23-29, 1998 edition of the NY Press newspaper. The RBMC screenings for NYUFF on March 12-13 were held at the Pink Pony Theater at 176 Ludlow St. — just down the block from the RBMC’s regular home of 145 Ludlow. Both Frye and Eros were both listed as “Special Guest Star Curators” at the NYUFF website.

The below screening schedule is cribbed as best as possible from the promotional flyers archived by Frye and graciously loaned to the Underground Film Journal. (Any errors are our own. Feel free to point them out for us to correct.) Then, below the schedule is a gallery selection of those flyers.

January 5

No screening — On hiatus

January 12

“Great Expectations”
Films selected by Pip Chodorov

January 19

“Children(s)” Games: Teenagers”
Oona O’Neill Screentest
Fantasy, dir. unknown student (MIT – ?)
Beach Party
Reading Improvement: Effective Speeds
On Melancholy or The Dream State of Ego (work in progress), dir. Jennifer Fieber
Teenage Drunk Driving
International Velvet — Digest
Unnamed film from the Archive of Lary

January 26

“Disjecta Membra: Recent works by Aaron Scott”
Acedia (The Exhaustion of Pretext)
Prelude: Final Exit
Untitled (Solid Objects)
The Perfect Crime

February 2

“Peering Through a Fresnel Glass”
Films from the collection of Dennis Nyback
Weekend Driver
4 Men & a Beer Bottle
Assembly Line
How Do I Love Thee
Ural Trucks
Bimbo’s Initiation

February 9

“Visions of Metaphor”
Films by Scott Stark

February 16

“Valentine’s Day (Nuptial Bliss)”
(partial film list below)
Oona & Adrian’s Wedding, dir. Ken Jacobs
Robert & Amy’s Wedding, dir. Jonas Mekas
How to Undress in Front of Your Husband
How to Keep a Husband, dir. Edward D. Wood, Jr. (attributed to)
What the Blushing Bride Wore
Honeymoon Hotel, dir. Tony Ganz
21st Anniversary Egg Not
Toni’s Wedding
Night Train, dir. Eros & Circle X
Oasis of the Pharoahs, dir. George Kuchar

February 23

“Speech ‘Impediments'”
Presented by Louise Bourque
Gently Down the Stream, dir. Su Friedrich
Remedial Reading Comprehension, dir. Owen Land (Watch Online)
Speak, dir. Robert Todd
Just Words, dir. Louise Bourque
Critical Mass, dir. Hollis Frampton

March 2

“By His Cinematic Request (J. Jennings)”
Movies by Jim Jennings; and movies that inspired him
Morning, dir. Ernie Gehr
St. Cristobal, dir. Jim Jennings
Airshaft, dir. Ken Jacobs
The School of Athens
Cassis, dir. Jonas Mekas
Intrigue, dir. Jim Jennings
Painting the Town, dir. Jim Jennings
Tears, dir. Jim Jennings
Bye Bye Bob, dir. Jim Jennings
All My Life, dir. Bruce Baillie
Nuke Brink (You Don’t Need a Gun), dir. Jim Jennings

March 9

“Shiners From Rotterdam”
A sneak preview of some of the best films from the 28th Rotterdam International Festival — hosted by Ralph McKay
Ustra, dir. Amitav Kaul
HKG (Hong Kong), dir. Gerard Holthuis
Film Ist, dir. Gustav Deutsch
#11 [Marey <-> Moire], dir. Joost Rekveld
(Break so that those who are susceptible to epilepsy may choose to leave.)
Csoda Pok (Wonder Spider), dir. panOptic

March 12

“Parhelian Epi-Phenomena”
(Part of the New York Underground Film Festival)
Departure, dir. Steve Polta
Micromoth, dir. Julie Murray
Retrospectroscope, dir. Kerry Laitala
Midnight Sun, dir. Jerome Cook
The Flamethrowers, dir. Schmeltzdahin, Alte Kinder, Owen O’Toole
Mr. Hayashi, dir. Bruce Baillie
Motion Studies, dir. Mark Wilson
Ambulo, dir. Aaron Scott
Circus, dir. Moira Tierney
Spikes, dir. Francois Boue
Not Fall, dir. Kain Karawan

March 13

9:00 p.m.: “Psychic Surgery aka Bad Medicine”
(Part of the New York Underground Film Festival)
Anathema, dir. Julie Murray
Phenix, dir. Andrej Zdravic
Blicklust, dir. Dietmar Brehm
X Times X, dir. Bradley Eros
Nevermind, dir. Jennifer Reeder
Eye Operation, dir. Anonymous
Epileptic Seizure Comparison, dir. Paul Sharits

11:00 p.m.: “Warning: May Cause Cataracts”
(Part of the New York Underground Film Festival)
Diszey Spots, dir. tENTATIVELY a cONVENIENCE
Jimy & Roky, dir. Jim Seibert
Trigger Film & Bare Strip, dir. Luis Recoder
A Trip Through the Brooks Home, dir. Tony Ganz
Mrs. Crawford, dir. Rick Rodine
Dithercumber (with Orson Wells), dir. Bruce McClure
Thine Inward Looking Eyes, dir. Thad Povey
(Films By), dir. Michael Johnson
Ballhead, dir. Mara Mattuschka

March 16

Lucha Libre, dir. Moira Tierney
Skinflick, dir. Moira Tierney
Trux, dir. Moira Tierney
Sweep of Reason, dir. Moira Tierney
Hot Brass, dir. Moira Tierney
Circus, dir. Moira Tierney
St. Audoen’s, dir. Moira Tierney
Hood, dir. Francois Boue
Jump, dir. Francois Boue
Prep, dir. Francois Boue
Suspended, dir. Francois Boue
Suspended Fire, dir. Francois Boue
Overhead, dir. Francois Boue
Tabu Mana, dir. Francois Boue
Sarkara, dir. Francois Boue
Prospect, dir. Francois Boue
Project, dir. Francois Boue
Giravolta, dir. Francois Boue

March 23

“Spell Magick With a K”
ElectraMorphic, dir. Erotic Psyche (Bradley Eros/Aline Mare)
Tesla Coil, activated by Jamie Moreness
Invocation of My Demon Brother, dir. Kenneth Anger
The Magician, dir. Tommy Turner & Jennifer Tull

March 30

“Light on Falling Water Writes the Text”
Invitation to a Voyage, dir. Joel Schlemowitz
Silbern, dir. Caspar Strake
Nocturne, dir. Peggy Ahwesh

April 6

Holy Mary, dir. Jerry Tartaglia
A.I.D.S.C.R.E.A.M., dir. Jerry Tartaglia
Ecce Home, dir. Jerry Tartaglia
Final Solutions, dir. Jerry Tartaglia
Lambda Man, dir. Jerry Tartaglia
1969, dir. Jerry Tartaglia

April 20

“The Effect of Dada & Surrealism (On Hollywood Film)”
Presented by Dennis Nyback

April 27

“The Effects of Various Stimulants on Web Making”
Film premieres by Naomi Neuman
Flight, dir. Greta Snider

May 4

Pre-Noctural, dir. Phil Solomon
Nocturne, dir. Phil Solomon
Passage of the Bride, dir. Phil Solomon
Clepsydra, dir. Phil Solomon
Short Untitled Film, dir. Phil Solomon
Rocket Boy vs. Brakhage, dir. Phil Solomon
Concrescence, dir. Phil Solomon

May 11

Films by Phil Weisman, including nothing, but… (an 8mm trilogy)

May 18

“1st Annual Report (Cinema Until Now)”

Bradley Eros presents a special commemorative program honoring the 1st anniversary of the Robert Beck Memorial Cinema and the 36th of Mr. Zapruder’s little movie, those Athenian children, springing from the fore-heads of their fathers. Program to include Bruce Conner‘s Report, Keith Sanborn’s Public Performance and a Statement, Brian Frye‘s Meeting With Khruschev, Bradley Eros’s Gentlemen “Prefer” (Slowly), readings, philological investigation and more.

Online Cinema

June 10, 2018

Candy and Daddy — Anton Perich

Candy and Daddy by Anton Perich (1972)

Starring: Candy Darling, Taylor Mead and Craig Vandenburgh

After living as a poet and a painter in Paris, France in the mid-1960s, Croatian-born artist Anton Perich moved to New York City where he found part-time work as a busboy at the notorious hangout spot Max’s Kansas City. There, he met and hung out with several of Andy Warhol’s “Superstars,” such as Andrea Feldman, Jackie Curtis, Holly Woodlawn and Candy Darling.

Documenting the scene at Max’s, Perich took photographs and Super 8mm films, but he would become most well-known in the early ’70s as a pioneering underground videomaker.

In the book Your Fifteen Minutes Are Up by Catherine O’Sullivan Shorr, Perich notes that he didn’t speak English upon arriving in NYC, but he formed a bond with actor Taylor Mead, with whom he could speak French.

According to a title card appearing on the video — not on the original video, but on the version uploaded to Perich’s YouTube account — Candy and Daddy was created in NYC in 1972. A note appearing in the book I Love Taylor Mead by John Edward Heys indicates that the video was made in the apartment of Sam Green, an art curator who promoted the early work of Andy Warhol, several of whose paintings can be seen hanging on the walls in the video.

For what purpose Candy and Daddy was made, who all worked on the production and where the video might have screened in 1972 is unknown as of this writing. However, Perich would cause an uproar in 1973 after he broadcast risque videos on New York City’s Public Access Channel “C.”

Candy Darling and Taylor Mead star in Anton Perich's Candy and Daddy

Perich first video on Channel “C” was broadcast on February 4, 1973, and had to be shut down twice during the airing. The first time came when poet Hy Manhattan fondled the breasts of a woman only known as Rachel. Then, during a segment called “Mr. Fixit,” actor Danny F. attempted to insert a Vaseline-covered cylindrical light bulb into the rectum of another actor Sami Melange and the program shut down for five minutes.

Despite the controversy of this initial program, Perich continued to broadcast scandalous videos on Sunday nights. Many of these shows starred Taylor Mead, who frequently exposed himself on camera.

Again, it is not known if Candy and Daddy aired on Perich’s public access broadcasts.

Sadly, all of the actors in this video have passed away:

Candy Darling, RIP, March 21, 1974
Craig Vandenburgh, RIP, November 2, 2006
Taylor Mead, RIP, May 8, 2013

Perich is still working as an artist. Later in the 1970s, he invented an “electric painting machine” that is recognized as an early precursor to the inkjet printer. You can learn more about his art and career at the website for the Postmasters Gallery in NYC, currently located in Tribeca.