I work in a lot of different media and modes—from 16mm to cell phone video, and from expanded cinema performance to screen-recorded “desktop cinema”—and with a range of approaches, from material investigations of the medium (or mediums) to experimental documentaries and essayistic video. My subject matter is equally diverse, although I’ve made a number of films on the transformation of the built landscape by the forces of global capitalism. I also frequently work with found images from both the contemporary televisual and internet mediascapes and my collection of thousands of 16mm educational and industrial films. The movement between these media and modes is a way of continuing to truly experiment in my work rather than settling into “experimental film” as a mere genre.
While at Headlands
As I start the residency, I’m likely to still be finishing work on the sound with frequent collaborator Cody Hennesy on my film Amazonia, which looks at the cities where Amazon.com had their original distribution centers as a way of thinking about how the virtual economy transforms the real world. I then plan devote the bulk of my attentions to a long-simmering project called (IN)FIRM, about the body and aging. I’m a little reluctant to say too much about that too soon, but it will involve hundreds of pounds of 16mm educational films that I’ll be driving out to Headlands with me, as well as the class notes of the Amherst College Class of 1938 and much else. I also have a vague fantasy about shooting something new and short inspired by the California landscapes that will surround me, so I’ll be packing my Bolex as well.
Everything Old is New Again, 2018; 16mm film loop; 0:10 min.; © Roger Beebe
A Metaphor for the End of Just About Everything, 2016; HD cell phone video; 3:00 min.; © Roger Beebe
Congratulations (One Step at a Time), 2014; looping HD video; 62:00 min.; © Roger Beebe
Beginnings, 2009/2011; digital audio; 5:00 min.; © Roger Beebe
S A V E, 2006; 16mm film; 5:30 min.; © Roger Beebe