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Colour and the moving image

Press release issued: 8 July 2009

Colour films from the first 50 years of cinema will be shown at Arnolfini this week at a unique event organised by researchers at the University of Bristol to coincide with a major conference on the history, theory and aesthetics of the moving image in colour.

‘All the Hues of Nature: Colour Film and Restoration’ is designed to showcase early colour films restored by the British Film Institute National Archive and the Filmmuseum, nl.  The event takes place on Friday 10 July from 6-8pm.

The programme includes Making Fashion (GB Humphrey Jennings, 1938) a celebration of English fashion design, dealing with the development of Norman Hartnell’s spring collection; L’inferno (Italy, Helios Film, Velletri, Dir Giuseppe Berardi, 1911) the long-thought-lost (discovered in the Vatican film library) ‘other’ version of Dante’s Inferno made in 1911 to cash in on the box-office success of an earlier version of 1909; and Prekrasnaya Lyukanida (Russian Empire, Dir. Ladislas Starevitch, 1912) (‘Beautiful Leukanida’ or ‘Beetles’) one of Ladislas Starevitch’s stop-frame animations of model beetles crafted from fragments of deer-skin, wire and wood and manipulated into the passions and (im)moralities of human impulses.

The films will be introduced by invited speakers including Bryony Dixon (BFI), Tom Vincent (Aardman Animation) and Giovanna Fossati (Filmmuseum, nl.) and will be accompanied by live music composed by Jean Hasse.

Tickets are available from the Arnolfini Box Office  Tel: 0117 917 2300/01 £6.00 (full price) £4.50 (concession)

Tickets for the screening include access to a panel discussion on colour and film restoration, chaired by Professor Tom Gunning (University of Chicago), which will take place at Arnolfini on Saturday 11 July from 5.30-6.30pm.  Panel participants include Sonia Genaitay (British Film Institute), Giovanna Fossati (Filmmuseum, nl.), Daniela Currò (Haghe Film Conservation B.V., Netherlands) and Josh Yumibe (Oakland University).

The screening and discussion panel are sponsored by Screen Journal as one of its 50th Anniversary events and hosted by the Colour and the Moving Image conference, University of Bristol.

This conference aims to extend previous work on colour and to consider the form and functions of colour from perspectives within four major strands: histories and technologies, film theory, philosophies and aesthetics of colour, and the ethics, practices and theories surrounding the deterioration and conservation of colour film.

The conference is organised by Professor Sarah Street (Bristol), Dr Liz Watkins (Bristol), Dr Simon Brown (Kingston University), Deborah Gibbs (Bristol) and Vicky Jackson (Bristol).   It is part of a project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

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