Oklahoma Contemporary


Friday, May 10 | Breathing Room

Friday night’s Breathing Room program presented a refreshing sampler of films across a range of genres, from abstract storytelling and animated collage work to a haunting exploration of guilt and a teenage filmmaker’s tale of two serial killers. The night culminated with an exploration of experimental abstract works by guest artist Sabine Gruffat, whose films have been screened at museums and festivals around the world.

Friday night's program ended with a conversation between Gruffat and SEEN/UNSEEN curator Kim Voynar.

All run times listed in minutes.

Shape of a Surface
Director: Nazlı Dinçel
Run time: 9:05

The ground holds accounts of once-pagan, then-Christian and now-Muslim ruins of the city built for Aphrodite. As she takes revenge on Narcissus, mirrors reveal what is seen and surfaces, limbs dismantle and marble turns flesh.

Director: Ana Nedeljković
Run time: 10:00

A film about (local) patriotism, tourism and emigration. The girl has lived in a gray, isolated country, enclosed by a huge wall. She has never travelled anywhere, but all her life she has been dreaming of leaving forever for a perfect world called Abroad.

Hi I Need to Be Loved
Director: Marnie Ellen Hertzler
Run time: 10:00

Actors from Craigslist audition for a film by reading spam emails from a teleprompter. Three are cast: A Dancer, A Chef and A Milkmaid. Is it poetry or malware?

Director: Špela Čadež
Run time: 11:00

Filip lives in a poor neighborhood, dreaming of writer’s glory and a luxurious lifestyle in a more-prosperous part of town. One day Filip gets a knock on the door. His neighbor Tereza, an older prostitute who Filip tries to avoid by all means, asks him to write a letter for her fiancé. Filip agrees. And it would all end up fine if, a week later, Tereza hadn’t shown up at his doorstep again, asking him to write an answer to the previous letter.

The Fawn Response
Director: Wynter Rhys
Run time: 18:00

Two serial killers meet over coffee because they have targeted the same victim by mistake.

Green Water
Director: Marnie Ellen Hertzler
Run time: 2:37

Green Water is a collaged animation using archival magazine photography and advertisements to create a domestic world in which a woman travels through rooms in search of the perfect Easter basket. Utilizing mid-century and 1960s imagery and color palettes, an imaginary space is created with simple movements, rich sound design and a linear narrative. Green Water is visual storytelling through collage and animation. Easter is here, and things are getting strange.


Director: Dahci Ma
Run time: 10:29

A starving fugitive, on the run from the police, is confronted with his crimes by his own subconscious.


Director: Sabine Gruffat
Run time: 10:00
Framelines is an abstract scratch film made by laser etching abstract patterns on the film emulsion of negative and positive 35 mm film. The strips of film were then re-photographed on top of each other as photograms, then contact printed. The soundtrack filters and layers the noise made by the laser-etched optical track.

Brave New World

Director: Sabine Gruffat
Run time: 6:36

In 1927, Henry Ford bought land in the Brazilian Amazon and called it Fordlandia. His plan to build a rubber plantation was part of an ambitious strategy to export mass production techniques and Midwestern Puritan ideologies to a foreign and diverse ecological system. While his enterprise failed, Fordlandia lay the groundwork for future environmental assaults on the rainforest.

In this video, 35 mm archival silent documentary-film footage, shot by Henry Ford’s own filmmakers, is reworked and given a soundtrack revealing the colonial lens through which the filmmakers apprehended unfamiliar nature. Through editing and processing, the film confronts the violent history of Fordism while questioning the limits of mediated vision.

Black Oval White
Director: Sabine Gruffat
Run time: 3:00

A video recording of a computer-generated abstract animation that is keyed, wiped and matted by electronic oscillators and feedback. The sound of the electronic oscillators is delayed and pitched to produce modulations.

Amarillo Ramp
Director: Sabine Gruffat
Run time: 24:00

Perhaps best known for his monumental Utah earthwork Spiral Jetty, American sculptor Robert Smithson profoundly shaped how we understand landscape and land use. This experimental Super-16 mm film documents Smithson's final earthwork, Amarillo Ramp, located in the Panhandle of northwest Texas. Employing filmmaking strategies that are both responsive to the artwork's environmental context and informed by Smithson's own art-making strategies, director Sabine Gruffat and filmmaker Bill Brown encounter Smithson's Ramp as an index of the Anthropocene, a term coined by ecologist Eugene Stoermer and atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen to describe the current geological epoch marked by the unprecedented degree to which human behavior impacts the earth's ecosystem.

In Conversation: Kim Voynar with Sabine Gruffat
Moderated by Kim Voynar
Program time: 30:00

Learn more about SEEN/UNSEEN.

See schedules for Thursday and Saturday.


Monday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Closed Tuesday

Wednesday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Thursday 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.

Friday - Sunday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

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Oklahoma City, OK 73103
Phone: 405 951 0000
Fax: 405 951 0003

Oklahoma Contemporary
P.O. Box 3062
Oklahoma City, OK 73101

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