Celebrating Maya Deren's 95th
Russian-born Maya Deren was a woman of many artistic talents. She was a dancer, choreographer, photographer, and poet, among other things. She is best known, however, for her significant contributions to cinema as both an experimental filmmaker and theorist. Her 1943 avant-garde short film Meshes of the Afternoon, a mesmerizing surrealist fantasia filled with doppelgängers, a foreboding mirror-faced figure, and plenty of dark dealings unraveling in sunbaked Los Angeles, is one of the true classics of its form and a fabulously entertaining one at that.
Filmed in the backyard of the Hollywood movie industry, Deren's groundbreaking film was strongly influenced by surrealists like Dali, Buñuel, and Cocteau, and its influence can be seen in the work of David Lynch like Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive. There was nothing quite like Meshes of the Afternoon in 1943 and it still feels fresh and entrancing today.
Deren would have been 95 on April 29, and to mark the occasion, video essayist and Editor in Chief at Indiewire Press Play, Kevin B. Lee, and film curator and critic Livia Bloom, pay tribute to Deren's masterpiece. It makes for great snapshot film criticism.
|Keyframe: Watching Maya Deren with Film Curator Livia Bloom|
Culture News By Stephen Cedars
Evocative work from a contemporary mythmaker>>
Culture News By Avram Finkelstein