Although I spoke to artist and filmmaker Brent Green at his Bellwether opening this Saturday, I unfortunately do not have any photos of the artist in an overcrowded space to post here. I guess you’ll just have to suffer through this professionally taken installaton shot. My review of the exhibition can be found at The Reeler, but as always, I’ve included a few paragraphs to pique your interest.
Paulina Hollers, an exhibition comprising three homemade animated videos and a tall spindly clock situated at the entrance of Bellwether Gallery, doesn’t appear at first to be so full of the unexpected. The work looks like a Tim Burton movie, it sounds like a combination of the spoken-word psychedelia of King Missile and the emo indie of Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst (his collaborators are actually blues rock band Califone and noise rockers the Majik Markers), it reads like a Virginia Woolf novel or a T.S. Eliot poem — everything feels familiar in some way. Yet the success of this exhibition does not lie in the reinvention of the wheel, but rather that Green never confuses the maudlin with the poetic or inconsistency with falseness.
The three shorts all follow separate narratives that can be linked thematically to the paradox of the death and of life. The title film, the longest of these works at 20 minutes, tells the story of “an asshole kid” named Holler who goes to Hell for trying to kill a rabbit on the side of the road. His gardening, religious mother Paulina is distraught when she hears her child has been hit by a bus; she soon kills herself to retrieve her son from whatever exile he's been sent to. But upon departing her 3D existence for the hand-drawn underworld, Paulina discovers she cannot escape as planned. So there she stays. No tidy ending completes this story, and Green leaves the viewer with only the suggestion that to forget the beauty that surrounds us may take us places we don't want to go.
To read more click here.
Additional screening information:
Brent Green will present Paulina Hollers tonight at 7:30 at IFC Center, followed by a conversation with Filmmaker Magazine editor Scott Macaulay. Green’s work will be featured at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival; a Jan. 23 screening at The Knitting Factory features live musical accompaniment by the Magik Markers and Brendan Canty from Fugazi.