The Cremaster cycle director Matthew Barney has been announced as the recipient of the 54th San Francisco International Film Festival’s Golden Gate Persistence of Vision Award. The multimedia artist will receive the award on Saturday, April 30th before the North American premiere of his latest work, “Drawing Restraint 17.” The San Francisco International Film Festival will run from April 21 to May 5.
“We are delighted to present the persistence of vision award to Matthew Barney, an artist who continues to make innovative use of moving images as a vital part of his unique cosmology of provocative and memorable work,” said the San Francisco Film Society’s Director of Programming, Rachel Rosen.
The award, established in 1997, honors filmmakers who work outsides the confines of conventional narrative cinema. Past winners include Lourdes Portillo (2009), Errol Morris (2008), Guy Maddin (2006), Fernando Birri (2002), Kenneth Anger (2001), and Jan Svankmajer (1997).
Below is the full release:
North American Premiere of Drawing Restraint 17 at Tribute to Multidisciplinary Artist
San Francisco, CA — The 54th San Francisco International Film Festival (April 21 – May 5) is proud to present the Golden Gate Persistence of Vision Award to multimedia artist Matthew Barney. Working in several mediums including sculptural installations, live performance and film, Barney is perhaps best known for the five-part Cremaster film cycle. Over the past two decades he has refused to be confined by gallery walls or conventions of filmmaking, gaining a reputation for his stunningly original performance pieces, often positioning himself — or a highly modified version of himself — as the subject. Barney will be presented with the award and participate in an onstage interview with writer, critic and curator Glen Helfand, preceding the North American premiere of Drawing Restraint 17, 5:00 pm, Saturday, April 30 at the Sundance Kabuki Cinemas. This film is the latest installment in Barney’s ongoing Drawing Restraint series, which merges sculpture, athleticism and cryptic symbolism into a stunning meditation on artmaking and physical exertion.
Established in 1997, the Persistence of Vision Award each year honors the achievement of a filmmaker whose main body of work is outside the realm of typical narrative feature filmmaking, crafting documentaries, short films, television, animated, experimental or multiplatform work.
“We are delighted to present the persistence of vision award to Matthew Barney, an artist who continues to make innovative use of moving images as a vital part of his unique cosmology of provocative and memorable work,” said Rachel Rosen, San Francisco Film Society director of programming.
Born in San Francisco and raised in Idaho, Barney first became involved in the art scene as a teenager. As an undergraduate at Yale University his work began to turn heads. Graduating in 1989 with a degree in fine art, Barney had already begun crafting some of his still ongoing artistic projects. Barney was 24 years old when he was given his first solo exhibition at SFMOMA and in 1994 he premiered Cremaster 4, beginning his visually extravagant series of feature-length films, nonsequentially. Over the past two decades Barney has constructed a magnificent universe through his work, drawing inspiration from sports, biology, literature and mythology. Barney has recently shied away from feature-length filmmaking to reconsider real-time performances. With some large scale pieces of live performance art, such as Ren and Khu, Barney has created a stir, using oversized props such as a whaling ship, and disrupting everyday life in major metropolitan cities. His live performance art is often documented in film and photography adding further layers to Barney’s multi-disciplinary approach to art.
Previous winners of the Persistence of Vision Award include animator Don Hertzfeldt (2010), documentarians Lourdes Portillo (2009), Errol Morris (2008) and Heddy Honigmann (2007), cinematic iconoclast Guy Maddin (2006), documentarians Adam Curtis (2005) and Jon Else (2004), experimental filmmaker Pat O’Neill (2003), Latin American cinema pioneer Fernando Birri (2002), avant-garde filmmaker Kenneth Anger (2001), animator Faith Hubley (2000), documentarians Johan van der Keuken (1999) and Robert Frank (1998) and animator Jan Svankmajer (1997).
The Golden Gate Persistence of Vision Award program is sponsored by Esurance, the direct-to-consumer car insurance company. Esurance is improving the car insurance experience for consumers by offering the best of both worlds: innovative technology coupled with the human touch.
Esurance will also support this year’s SFIFF Online Screening Room and Scoop du Jour daily Festival reports. This unique online screening platform gives people in San Francisco and all over the world a chance to participate in the renowned SFIFF with the convenience of viewing from their computer screen or mobile device.