In a digital world, sometimes our screens are what we want and need. We are surrounded daily by them – at our desks, in our hand, or sitting on our couches watching them from home. While some bemoan the modern age and all of its technology, many others love our screens and the opportunity they give us all to take a glimpse into new worlds through film and video and online media, giving us access to new ideas and experiences that we otherwise may not have had a chance to witness.
For instance, did you know that 21c Museum Hotels has a YouTube channel? In addition to content featuring the goings on inside of the hotel and restaurant (including how-to’s on some of our food and drink recipes), it is also loaded with art and artists! If you don’t live in town or didn’t have the opportunity to come to an opening reception to hear your favorite artist speak, the artist interviews are being shared with everyone via the channel. Miss a lecture? Those are available, too. It’s all there!
In a further effort to bring people and art together, 21c has partnered with Art21, the Peabody award-winning PBS program that presents Art in the Twenty First Century, to bring us a new monthly program called Art21 Film Series at 21c. Art21 and 21c both share a similar philosophy, to introduce as many people as possible to the art of the twenty-first century and to do it in ways that are incredibly accessible – such as public television or a free 24/7 museum. “Art is for the many, not the few” is a strong belief in these parts.
Alice Gray Stites, 21c’s Chief Curator and Director of Arts Programming, says that the partnership will broaden the audience that both are reaching out to within the community and beyond, saying that “free public film screenings will allow us to share more new art with more people. As the range of artists and artworks will span a very broad spectrum, exposure to these images, ideas, and narratives will have unpredictable range of impacts on the community. And it is that unpredictability—the mysterious, myriad ways in which art can shape an individual’s perspective, forge connections, spark change, or otherwise influence a community, that reinforces 21c’s commitment to sharing innovative art and ideas. Also the film series is the first 21c program scheduled in all 21c Museum Hotels concurrently; as a multi-venue event, this should create connections in all three cities!” She adds, “as 21c expands its cultural programming, the public interest and enthusiasm for contemporary art will grow; experiencing new art and ideas will increasingly be locally integrated into our city’s fabric, and globally connected to the multi-cultural communities where great art is being created, today and tomorrow.”
The monthly screenings of Art21 Film Series at 21c will include selections such as full-length films from the museum’s collection and films and shorts produced by Art21. The series began in October 2013 with the inaugural showing of Kara Walker: Negress, an Art21 film showcasing the artist, whose work is part of the 21c collection (her piece A Warm Summer Evening in 1863 is now on view at 21c Louisville as part of the Aftermath exhibit). Future 2013 screenings include William Kentridge: Anything is Possible on November 24th and Un Ballo en Maschera by Yinka Shonibare, M.B.E, and an Art21 Exclusive short form documentary of David Altmejd’s work on December 15th. As always, screenings are free and open to the public. For more information regarding upcoming screenings, please visit the 21c Calendar.