Stories

The 16mm magic of Charlotte Pryce

A ‘film alchemist’ is a good way to describe her. IFFR has invited L.A.-based and London-born short-filmmaker Charlotte Pryce for an enticing programme within our Deep Focus section at our 48th edition in 2019. She’ll be presenting a collection of her hypnotic 16mm shorts as well as two mesmerising magic lantern performances that have never been shown outside California.

“They’re like little film miniatures,” says IFFR’s short-film programmer Erwin van ‘t Hart, talking about the curious short films of Charlotte Pryce. “You’re often not quite sure what you’re looking at, but the hypnotic effect is always immediate, especially when watched in its intended 16mm format. Dripping fluids, little trembling specks, colourful critters and flowing leaves of grass all move across the screen like one natural, organic whole. Her films highlight the very materialistic qualities of film while simultaneously transporting you to other, unknown worlds.”

Besides teaching experimental film at Calarts L.A., Pryce has made a name for herself by creating highly delicate and tactile short films with an extraordinary eye for detail. However, she rarely crosses the Atlantic to present her films in Europe.

IFFR 2019’s Short Profile on Pryce’s oeuvre (which has been three years in the making) will provide a unique opportunity for short-film lovers to be immersed in her work and, as a cherry on top, experience two unique magic lantern performances, one of which was only first performed in 2018. The magic lantern, known to most people as the now obsolete device that once enabled some of the very first moving image projections in the history of cinema, proves to be a suitable tool for Pryce. In her hands, several magic lantern projectors will transform WORM’s UBIK space in Rotterdam into a mysterious portal to unknown cinematic territories. So step into Pryce’s garden of wonder and be amazed.

IFFR 2019’s Deep Focus Short Profile on Charlotte Pryce is made up of two compilation programmes, each consisting of a prelude by a different filmmaker, four to five shorts by Charlotte Pryce and one of Pryce’s two magic lantern performances.

  • Still: Tears of a Mudlark

    Still: Tears of a Mudlark

  • Still: Pwdre Ser: the rot of stars

    Still: Pwdre Ser: the rot of stars

  • Still: A Study in Natural Magic

    Still: A Study in Natural Magic

  • Still: W.H. Hudson’s Remarkable Argentine Ornithology

    Still: W.H. Hudson’s Remarkable Argentine Ornithology

Magic lantern performances:

The Tears of a Mudlark, Charlotte Pryce, 2018, USA, 20’, international premiere

W.H. Hudson’s Remarkable Argentine Ornithology, Charlotte Pryce, 2013, USA, 15’, international premiere

 

Short films:

Concerning Flight: Five Illuminations in Miniature, Charlotte Pryce, 2004, USA, 8’

Curious Light, Charlotte Pryce, 2011, USA, 4’

Discoveries on the Forest Floor 1-3, Charlotte Pryce, 2007, USA, 4’

Looking Glass Insects, Charlotte Pryce, 2013, USA, 4’

The Parable of the Tulip Painter and the Fly, Charlotte Pryce, 2008, USA, 4’

Prima Materia, Charlotte Pryce, 2015, USA, 3’

Pwdre Ser: the rot of stars, Charlotte Pryce, 2019, USA, 7’, world premiere

A Study in Natural Magic, Charlotte Pryce, 2013, USA, 3’

X, Charlotte Pryce, 1988, USA, 6’

Photo in header: Still: Tears of a Mudlark